By MEGHAN KEARNEY // Catch Portland's "bliss pop" Souvenir Driver playing exclusive, unreleased tracks at Saturday's Project Pabst night show
Portland’s Souvenir Driver has an eery way of transporting their listeners in time to the dreamy origins of shoegaze. Their forthcoming unreleased self-titled record draws the kind of nostalgic vibe reminiscent of sitting in a smoky basement in 1990 listening to your older brother spin “Vapour Trail” for the first time and you never wanted to leave. Vocals from Nate Wey come with a nanosecond off beat timing that give the music a weird, beautiful discomfort. Music mixes a soft blend of rock and a big blissful ball of feeling.
The record, which features 8 brand new tracks, was unofficially released in limited digital-only format at the band’s recent Holocene show. For that night only you could pick up a deck of tarot-like cards, each featuring an original piece of artwork individually or in full decks, with a private link to each single track or full album, respectively. Until the band continues shopping it around, they say, the album was only released as such.
The record opens with the track “Swans,” a slow assembly that eases the album on. Halfway through, “Slow Retreat” offers a more modern hazy rock feel with deeper vocals that fall to the background of catchy drum beats before overtaking the chorus. “Driftwood” is an endearingly mushy depiction of an almost childlike love, made notable by Wey’s repetition of the line “you are the only thing I think about.” The last track on the record, “Ready,” is a lengthier, melancholy crooner that explodes into wall of fuzzy instrumentation and astutely pained vocals to close out the record.
If you missed Souvenir Driver’s big release at Holocene where the album was played in its entirety, the band says their upcoming show, part of the MusicfestNW Presents: Project Pabst night series, will be very similar. If you don’t want to miss a preview before Project Pabst you can check out their past releases here.
Souvenir Driver plays Kelly’s Olympian on Saturday, August 27th alongside And And And, RILLA, and Grand Lake Islands for only 5 bucks! If you move fast you can catch all of Duran Duran’s set and make it up town in time to hear the exclusive new tracks. Get your tickets now. 21+, doors at 8pm, show at 9pm.
Full weekend Project Pabst tickets can be purchased here.