It’s been a bit of a shit day, maybe even a shit week. You go and see a band, in the hope to find some relief or distraction from the perceived blandness of your life. You wait for two hours for them to come on, during which your mood gets worse – who do they think they are? Luckily for you, the first band on tonight are Surfer Blood, five young dudes from Florida who have made it their mission to throw everything that’s awesome about guitar rock together and improve your life through sheer exuberance. There’s Pixies bass lines (‘Twin Peaks’), Malkmus-esque slacker lyrics (‘Floating Vibes’) and singer/Michael Cera-lookalike John Paul Pitts whoops and pleads like a young Rivers Cuomo. This is far from cobbled-together idea rock, though – there are incongruous moments of tropical percussion, but nothing about Surfer Blood feels forced or insincere. Who cares if the band look like rabbits caught in the headlights of a freight train, or that the biggest part of the audience doesn’t seem to be paying much attention – they’re missing one hell of a show. Oh, and the fist-pumping, bro-mantic set closer ‘Swim’ really is one of the best songs of the year.
By Matthias Scherer
Originally published in issue 14 (vol 3) of Loud And Quiet. February 2010