Slow Pulp make a dreamy album for the year we can’t wake up from | Gossip Wolf | Chicago Reader

Slow Pulp make a dreamy album for the year we can’t wake up from 

Plus: Pelican guitarist Dallas Thomas keeps the solo jams coming, and a new indie-rock compilation benefits the Natural Resources Defense Council.

click to enlarge Slow Pulp - IMAGE BY COOOL
  • Slow Pulp
  • Image by Coool

Local four-piece Slow Pulp had to deal with some real-life nightmares to make the dreamy indie rock on their debut full-length album, Moveys, which arrives Friday, October 9, via indie label Winspear. Near the end of the writing and recording process, singer and guitarist Emily Massey had to return to Madison, Wisconsin (where the band had formed), to help her parents convalesce after a severe car crash. A week later COVID-19 shut down the country, so the rest of the band (bassist Alexander Leeds, guitarist Henry Stoehr, and drummer Theodore Mathews) finished the instrumental portions in Chicago while Massey recorded vocals at her father's home studio. Though Slow Pulp were physically separated, the swirling ballad "Falling Apart" and the tuneful epic "At It Again" prove the band have a hand-in-glove command of their sound.

Last week Pelican guitarist Dallas Thomas dropped his latest solo instrumental release, Vortex—whose album art is an amazing old photo of kiddie Dallas with a mullet. Thomas's heated, layered playing gasses up cuts such as the fiery "Head Hammer" and the tense, cyclical "Scripter." This is the fourth solo project he's posted to Bandcamp so far this year, and the others include an acoustic version of the April release Like Concrete.

Under the name Okay Alright, Chicagoland singer-songwriter Bryce Waitkus tenderly blends folk and emo, hitting a sweet spot in the Venn diagram where indie rock overlaps with bedroom pop. Waitkus has recruited a dozen like-minded acts to contribute to a compilation called Community Garden, which came out last week—they include Basement Brain from Nashville, Carter Ward from Indianapolis, and Crywank from Manchester, UK. Community Garden benefits nonprofit environmental advocacy group Natural Resources Defense Council.  v

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