Dylan Shearer makes psych-pop, that rare combination of drugged-out bliss and crystal clear melody that evokes The Beach Boys on acid, or The Free Design on ketamine. Not to say that Shearer invokes the more sinister edges of the drug-addled, oh no, this is psychedelia that wraps you up in a Fall sweater of guitar and woodwinds. Shearer’s psych isn’t tinged with the harder lines of bass that dominate so many eight-minute psych freak-outs (the speedy edge of a cheap, bad trip), instead it glows with a sort of warm, comforting light. At the heart of it all is Shearer’s voice – resonate and low, calm and friendly – a soothing, baritone guide through the wide-eyed wonder of the kindest psychedelia. Porchpuddles, Shearer’s second album, though run through with a line of 60s smiles, doesn’t feel one note instead he manages to capture both the toothy-grin of drugged-out wonder and the weighty melancholy that lingers at the end. This is psych and pop mixed in the most classic of ways, the tenuous edges of free-form psych brought together under the deceptively superficial happiness of best sort of pop.
Porchpuddles is out now on San Francisco’s very own Empty Cellar Records.
:Dylan Shearer – Porchpuddle Pond: