Surfer Blood, “1000 Palms”
Going from a big label back to an independent one can be a liberating (or a terrifying) experience in a band’s career. Thankfully, for Surfer Blood, it allowed them to explore new sounds and come back rejuvenated. For 1000 Palms, the quartet strays from the pristine surf-pop sound of 2013’s Pythons and fills their third LP with more reverb and psychedelic accents. The resulting full-length walks the fine line of expanding Surfer Blood’s sonic world with more grit and maintaining the group’s recognizable laid-back vibe that fans will appreciate. And while there isn’t a standout single on 1000 Palms, album highlights “Dorian” and “Island” showcase frontman John Paul Pitts’s smooth alto voice, enhanced by intricate guitar riffs, wistfully breezing through thoughtful verses. 1000 Palms stands with more confidence than Surfer Blood’s sophomore effort—and although at times it’s still a bit shaky—it’s an exciting first step to see where the band could go next.