Alex Calder
Strange Dreams
Captured Tracks
Street: 01.20
Alex Calder = Deerhunter + Beach Fossils + Mac DeMarco
Alex Calder is a member of the recent psych-rock genus that’s emerged within the last six years, which I can most accurately describe as “VCR-core.” You know what I mean: the sleepy, dreamy style that seems to seek out the eerie effect that your tape/VHS player used to have when the strip was warped. In Strange Dreams, you’ll find plenty of this—dreary guitar tones, reverbed vocals that are sometimes apathetic and sometimes lonely, and a vague sense of technological nostalgia. I found myself getting longingly contemplative to the star-like riff found in “The Morning” and caught the grooves of “Strange Dreams” and “Life Purpose.” However, after listening to this album a few times, I could not help but hear all of Calder’s work being entirely outdone by an easy comparison to Mac DeMarco. Calder just doesn’t share his element of humor and easiness, which redeems this genre’s oppressive feeling of warped-out boredom. Although, if DeMarco is a bit too accessible for you, Calder might just be the guy to show you how to really bum yourself out. –Nic Smith