Hailing from Chicago, Bandy are a rock band in the purest sense. Foregoing any pretensions or pomposity, their vision of rock ‘n roll is geared toward good times, the frantic energy and shout along vocals sweeping up the listener in a tide of jubilant noise. Which is not to say this is painted-by-numbers garage rock. Bandy use this immediacy as an anchor around which they push and pull in various experimental directions.
Their latest album, The Challengers, is a case in point. Build around a ramshackle, house show rawness, the album stretches rock as far as it will go. As label Under the Counter Tapes describes, the record is a “blistering half-hour of odes to the basement,” the sound ranging from post-punk, psych and love ballads to “Little Richard-esque rave-ups about weed dependency,” “outer space romanticism” and “pitch-modulated descents into madness.” Or, put another way, “smoothie from a blend of Mission of Burma, M.O.T.O., Penetrators, Thin Lizzy, and The Mothers of Invention.”
We’re delighted to share ‘Trying to Reach You, the latest single ahead of the album’s release this Friday. Occupying the Venn middle ground between power pop and hard rock, the track is a another speeding slice of sing-along goodness. With themes of abandoning lost causes, the songs forms one of the more cathartic songs on the record, the gruff vocals and infectious momentum representing the celebratory feeling of letting go, new freedom in its undistilled form.
The Challengers is out via Under the Counter Tapes on the 29th of March and you can pre-order it now.