Hermits on Holiday
Given the track record of its two principal artists—Tim Presley (a.k.a. White Fence) and Cate Le Bon—it’s hard to approach DRINKS with true objectivity. The pairing is a match made in turntable heaven, which is exactly why their full-length debut Hermits on Holiday is a slight letdown. It simply isn’t as good as it could have been. That said, it’s important to note that DRINKS is, like many of its influences (The Fugs, The Monks, The Slits, etc.), an abstract and challenging project, meant to push boundaries—not to be universally loved. Push boundaries it does, and in exploring the limitations of guitar-based rock (especially on album opener “Laying Down Rock”), Presley and Le Bon reveal strange and rewarding avenues built within the confines of their peculiar worlds. To wander with them is truly a pleasure, but be aware that occasionally these avenues will lead you straight into the brick.