• hulaboy / safe distance Split (LP, £18.95)

    label: Emotional Response

    A split LP from collective indie-stalwarts HULABOY and THE SAFE DISTANCE. HULABOY is the celebration of a twenty-five year friendship between Stewart Anderson (Boyracer etc) and Eric M. Stoess (KY indie giants Hula Hoop) that continues to bear musical fruit. Straddled comfortably between UK and US pop sensibilities, (with a healthy pilfering from Postcard and Flying Nun records back catalog), Hulaboy’s pop aesthetic comes alive with their 6 tracks on offer. Album opener “The End” is a bittersweet pop charmer with hooks-a-plenty. Elsewhere “Part Time Goth” amusingly tells of the teenage Anderson’s dabble into Goth culture. THE SAFE DISTANCE is a transatlantic recording project that continues the Emotional Response good-time international underground vibe. The band consists of Simon “Crayola” Williams (Sarandon, Crayola Summer, Great Leap Forward, A Witness etc) and Stewart Anderson. The songs operate at the more muscle-y end of the C86 musical spectrum, inspired by Bog-Shed and Ron Johnson bands such as bIG fLAME etc al, but pushed through a melodic indie pop filter: sincere vocals, fuzz bass, sinewy guitars, and clashing drums. The toe-tapping upbeat side opener “Prickly Pear” gets the Safe Distance party going, before the LP morphs into skewed pop experimentation.

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