Following a band's arc over a long period of time can yield surprising results, especially when the band in question is Wet Hair. Rising out of the dissolution of the still under-sung Raccoo-oo-oon, Shawn Reed inaugurated the new project with some tapes on his own Night People label; since those noisy, lo-fi beginnings, the band has evolved into a pop underdog I'd never have imagined possible. Following splits with Rene Hell, Naked on the Vague, Peaking Lights, and the band's own Ryan Garbes, they've shifted from more abstract directions into the focused yet shambolic psychedelia that rode its way through last year's In Vogue Spirit on De Stijl.
That album's follow-up (also for De Stijl) has arrived, and while the cloud of psychedelic pop remains in tact, there's a new rhythmic intensity. That change is thanks in most part to new bassist Justin Tye, who's stepped in after the exit of Matt Fenner. Wet Hair's new sound is lacquered with haze, Reed's voice familiarly obscured by an eight-ton layer of reverb, but it cuts deep with muscled bass, loose drumming, and vivid swirls of keys that punch through that fog like a beacon. Spill Into Atmosphere is worlds away from those first tapes, but it's the sound of a band finding its footing, then jumping off into the deep end of the pool and making as big a splash as possible.
Spill Into Atmosphere is out soon on De Stijl Records.