Classic rock n’ roll, basement pop, ’90s slacker punk, and bedroom pop are all genres that turn up frequently in this site’s featured selections, so it’d make sense for a record that seamlessly combines all of them into a cohesive whole would wind up being featured too. Enter: Pale Kids’ Holy Mess. A four track EP — the band’s third release since March 2016 — that doesn’t pull any punches and goes straight for the jugular with each swing.
Only one of these songs, “Prayer List”, exceeds two minutes in length. Even then, the song only exceeds the two-minute mark by five seconds. Not everyone needs a lot of time to make their point and Pale Kids make the most of the time they give themselves. All four of these songs land with maximum impact, making their velocity felt and their presence known each time any of them are cued up.
All of the songs deal, in one way or another, with personal failings, turning inward to examine microcosms of the darker things that are commonly felt but rarely publicly acknowledged. It’s in that examination that the band finds catharsis, opting to turn those thoughts into a defiant party and opening the doors to anyone that might be interested. By the time “St. James”, Holy Mess‘ final track and highlight (which offers up the faintest echoes of Jay Reatard‘s later work), winds to a close, it’s best to just give into the temptation of starting it over again from the top, before frantically telling a friend to get on board with their new favorite band.
Listen to Holy Mess below and pick it up here.