Souvenir Driver – “All the Patterns”


Souvenir Drive

Portland-based group Souvenir Driver label their sound as “bliss-pop”, a self-professed hybrid of shoegaze, post-punk, new wave, psych, and pretty much whatever else they’re digging at the moment. That philosophy results in a free and adventurous sound throughout their new album Living Water, which you can stream below in full. As their third release, Living Water finds the band’s sound at its fullest during an opportune time, fresh off local PDX acclaim and starting to accelerate in terms of national recognition. While the band’s sound is distinctive, there is a resemblance to post-punk revivalists in the vein of Lower Dens and early Interpol, particularly because they have the ability to alternate between moments of shimmering beauty and hauntingly developmental post-rock. The use of deliciously reverbed guitar lines, nocturnal synths, and Nate Wey’s translucent vocals certainly add to it all, as well.

Living Water offers many highlights among its ten tracks. What’s also cool is how each song is complemented by a different color-pattern cover on SoundCloud, echoing the album’s initial concept to create ten songs reflecting ten different moods and colors. A solid example of this is “All the Patterns”, where an ocean blue surely reflects the aquatic feel granted by the squiggly guitars and semi-tropical keys. Think Interpol’s early more pop-forward efforts, like “Obstacle 1“. Meanwhile, the more subdued “Kiss You Close” is accompanied by a mellow orange-y sunset glow, an apt choice considering the languid bass crawl and melodic upbeat demeanor. Living Water is a great album to explore in full; stream it below and purchase it on Bandcamp:

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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