Artist to Watch – The Entrance Band

the entrance band face the sun

Happy pop sounds and bubble-gum lyrics are two things that one should not expect when listening to Los Angeles rockers, The Entrance Band. In fact, Guy Blakeslee’s acid rock trio creates the complete opposite of the aforementioned qualities often associated with popular music. The Entrance Band produces sounds of pure nostalgia, recreating the psychedelic vibes of the sixties and seventies, associated with acts like Jefferson Airplane or Steppenwolf. Their recently released album, Face The Sun (released November 19th), is characterized by its psychedelic-blues feel and tenebrous lyricism.

The Entrance Band Reintroduces Psychedelic Rock on ‘Face The Sun’

The members of The Entrance Band (formerly known merely as Entrance) are no rookies to the music scene; the band has been releasing music since 2003, and has succeeded in associating themselves with notable groups such as Sonic Youth, Yeah Yeah Yeah’s, and Cat Power. They separate themselves from the norm with their psychedelic mixture of blues and jazz, a combination that is only present in modern music through a handful of artists.

Face The Sun provides its listeners with a dark, transcendental vibe. Blakeslee’s vocals are reminiscent of Moby Grape, possessing similar vocal inflections to the sixties psychedelic-folk rockers. The low-fi sharpness of their darkened melodic instrumentation acts as the perfect backdrop for the haunting lyrics that the majority of the albums tracks consist of. The strange nature of their music is difficult to overlook in songs like “Spider”—an eerie fusion of acid-rock and blues containing such haunting lyrics as “The spiders say to the fly, I’m going to love you but you’re gonna’ have to die,” and “spider hanging on the wall, get too high you’re bound to fall.”

“Medicine” continues the album’s overall aberrance; defined by its persistently menacing bass line, fantastically obscure guitar, and ghostly harmonies, the song acts as the pinnacle of Face The Sun. Blakeslee preaches “Falling from my eyes, tears of joy / Wanna be free, you have to destroy…We’ll dance upon the ruins of it all” as the tension of the songs instrumentation is halted by a brief moment of jubilance. This compelling essence is matched in the albums sixth track “Fire Eyes.” A foreign sounding blues number with a Devendra Banhart–feel, “Fire Eyes” demonstrates the musical chemistry of Blakeslee and his fellow band-mates Paz Lenchantin and Derek James. The carousel of infectious melody that acts as the supporting beam to Blakeslee’s uncanny poetry is arguably the catchiest of the album, and is certain to result in the involuntary whistling and toe-tapping of its listeners.

The Entrance Band may just be one of the best-kept secrets in modern music. Their stoner-rock vibe is the perfect alternative to the happy-go-lucky nature of the majority of modern music’s most notable participants. Through their tasteful blend of blues, jazz, and psychedelic rock, The Entrance Band reintroduces the darkened tones of the late sixties to a generation of listeners who ought to be thankful.

See The Entrance Band live!

Article by Adam Lalama

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