If you were a fan of Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti, circa Before Today, you’ll be wanting to jump all over this. Eyedress is a Filipino artist who goes by the name of Idris Vicuña in his day to day life, and he’s clearly taken great inspiration not only in the type of hypnagogic pop that permeated the erstwhile Mr. Rosenberg’s recorded output, but also in the dingy walls of packed, sweaty nightclubs, and perhaps even the neo-psychedelic ambience of The War On Drugs too.
The album itself is somewhat somniferous, but in a good way – these are tunes that will chill you to the bone, and I don’t mean like a horror film. If Let’s Skip To The Wedding enters your subconscious during your slumbers, I suspect you’ll wake up feeling fully refreshed. That said, tracks like ‘I Don’t Wanna Be Your Friend‘ admittedly possess a decidedly menacing nature (“you’d better say that shit to my face“) so the air hangs heavy with a sticky unease too. Wow, I never thought I’d be referencing a Toyah lyric in one of my reviews, but hey, I guess Eyedress has brought out the early eighties pop-punk in me. And what’s not to like about that?
It DOES have something of that decade pulsing through its veins, leaning partly towards the Goth royalty of nearly 40 years ago, but imbibing that with bright guitar strokes that lie somewhere between Johnny Marr and Vini Reilly at times. Although barely any of the songs here are upwards of three minutes long. Only ‘Happy Hour‘, which most certainly bears absolutely NO resemblance to the Housemartins single of the same name – you most definitely won’t be singing THIS one at the pub after a couple of pints! – and ‘My Girl The Finest‘, a slightly skewiff but almost Let’s Get It On period Marvin Gaye style number – manage to break that barrier, but of course, the upside of all this is that none of the tracks here ever outstay their welcome.
It’s a weird record to review really, because you go from the extreme highs of the ready-for-the-dancefloor brightness of ‘Skateboarding Day‘ but pause for several moments of quiet introspection along the way, ultimately arriving at the aching desire of Let’s Skip To The Wedding‘s closing number ‘Anything For You‘, which could well have lapsed into vomit enducing saccharine schmaltz in less capable hands. As it turns out, it’s just a really agreeable way to draw the curtain down on an interesting, enjoyable listen, which suggests Eyedress could well be here for the long run.
Let’s Skip To The Wedding is out now through Lex Records.