Producing a wholly original sound with aspects of post-punk and twisted Americana, The Hardly Boys are comprised of Vancouver-based producers Joey Joel (Run with the Heard) and Matt Papadopoulos (Booker T on Acid). Their newly released EP The Search for the Synthetic Void features five personality-packed tracks. Among the most notable is the murky “Moving Without Religion,” touting an eerie and menacing realm of post-punk with buzzing bass-synth and dark guitar crunches. The “I’m moving,” repetition around 01:07 succeeds immensely, as does the creepy synth tone ten seconds later. “Moving Without Religion” succeeds with an atmospheric grip, fully indicative of this project’s uniquely powerful pull.
Another EP track, “Jr ’73” leaves some of the darkness behind and assumes a looser, more Americana-forward feel. Although showing a different aesthetic, “Jr ’73” shows a similarly consuming quality, thanks to a constantly evolving song structure. 01:45 sees a nice lead-in to vocals following a playful synth-laden bridge, a la Foxygen. The track concludes with a a perky guest vocal and electro-guitar schematics.
Stream “Jr ’73” below, and the rest of The Search for the Synthetic Void on Spotify here.
“Moving Without Religion” and other memorable tracks from this month can also be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of January 2020’ Spotify playlist.