Somesurprises / Supercandy - “Some Candy”

(Crash Symbols)

The overly casual title Some Candy may fool you into dismissing this release, and that would be unfortunate. Although it appears to simply be a split release between two artists, it is truly a perfect meld of two incredible psych rock projects out of the Pacific Northwest. The name Some Candy is an merging of Somesurprises and Supercandy, and the music is a successful merge as well. Each track is built from superb instrumentation, and hazy psychedelic passages haunted by floating, angelic voices that hang in the air like morning fog.

Side A is headed up by Somesurprises, who wowed us last year with their release Alt on Doom Trip Records. This time around Somesurprises is hitting us up with a brilliant mixture of psychedelic rock, hazy shoegaze passages, smoky freak-folk vocals, and more tasty puffs of candy flavored mind smoke than you can really handle.  On the opening track, Bloody Wednesday, (well worth the price of admission on its own,) elegant and powerful vocalist Natasha El-Sergany provides otherworldy, reverb-drenched lyrics that are simply beyond. Add to that a hypnotic string arrangement and some swirling mists of ambient magic, and you’ve got a readymade escape from reality. Similarly, the track Funny Kid receives the same type of elevation - built up tracks of layered audio hypnosis, with larger-than-life vocals, and emotive, cinematic sweeps of sleepy musical ether.

If you manage to snag a tape of this excellent release, you’ll have the benefit of flipping the tape to side B to know when the music of Supercandy has begun, but most likely the release will simply continue to proceed with the same entrancing spell. Swept up in a truly cohesive extension of the already established musical framework, Supercandy, (which is the solo project of Brenan Chambers,) blesses the mixture with the satisfying jangle of acoustic guitar and trippy synth on the opening track, Lavender - followed by the glitchy sound tunnel of Silk Scream.  The psychedelic bass, swirling ambient haze, and glitchy samples of of Neon Wax Monsters from Planet April Showers is just as wild and untamed as the title suggests, with peals of echoey UFO sounds and a driving bout on the drum kit that bring the track into a wide open run full of distant voices and floating broken robot pieces.

Altogether, the execution and cohesion of Some Candy make it seem a lot more like the concerted effort of one very talented group of people, rather than of two separate entities. It is a full and engaging release that will certainly occupy our ‘best of’ list.

Gray Lee