White Mystery is a red-headed brother/sister duo from Chicago. They announced that they have a new album called Blood & Venom, to be released April 20th, but what I have for review is their debut self-titled debut, released last year.
I have to say, based on hearing their album, I hope they are just as lively and fun when they play live. I just get that impression from hearing the raw energy on the record. I just hope that people don't dismiss White Mystery as a copy of The White Stripes, another 'white'/red band with the White family of "husband"/"wife" team of guitars and drums, because I'll admit the similarities are there.
Most of the self-titled features sister Alex on vocals, but brother Francis sometimes does backup (see "Overwhelmed", "White Widow", "Aaron", and "Switch It Off") and even sings a section on "Don't Hold My Hand". Like garage punk bands, their songs are kept really short, most songs runs under three minutes, but that's okay, considering these high-voltage songs pack a lot in.
The next time they're in Minneapolis, I'll definitely be there to see them. In the meantime, here are their tour dates:
Mar 7 - White Lightening Wherehouse - Iowa City, IA
Mar 8 - Barley Street Tavern - Omaha, NE
Mar 9 - The Brick - Kansas City, MO
Mar 11 - Goner Records Store - Memphis, TN
Mar 16 - Trailer Space - Austin, TX
Mar 18 - Trailer Space - Austin, TX
Mar 19 - Beerland - Austin, TX
Mar 25 - The Double Door - Chicago, IL
Apr 15 - The Pilot Light - Knoxville, TN
Apr 16 - The Earl - Atlanta, GA
Apr 20 - Pancho's - Chicago, IL - Blood & Venom Release Show
Described as "angular spirit warriors", this band released their debut White Laces EP on January 18th (although I did read that they have put together a few cassette releases).
I'll be completely honest here, I was not all that impressed with the production work on the EP. Vocals sounds muddy, and music sounds very distant. Production aside, this is standard garage rock, maybe a little influenced by UK shoegaze bands.
Best song on the EP is "Sick of Summer" (mostly for the drum buildup towards the end) and "Psykick Healing" (for the guitar work), but, overall, the band sounds very young, this may be a good thing as they can only grow from here. They are playing at SXSW this year, which I'll be attending - so perhaps I'll tell a different story if I see them live.
Mar 05 Shea Stadium Brooklyn NY (with Big Troubles and Alex Bleeker and The Freaks)
Mar 09 Strange Matter Richmond VA (with Dinosaur Feathers and Motel Motel)
Mar 16-20 SXSW Austin TX
Mar 24 Strange Matter Richmond VA (with Cults, Sun Airway, Asobi Seksu)
Apr 15 The Bazaar Roanoke VA
They free song they are offering for you to download is "Motorik Twilight", which has a meaningless 30 second buildup until the hook kicks in.
If anything, White Fence's album, ...Is Growing Faith (released January 10th) does an amazing job at reproducing that jangley sixties sound, so much ... that you wonder what Tim Presley is doing in the 21st century. I believe this is his second album under the White Fence name, the debut was a self-titled released in 2010. I'm not sure why the name change, considering that Presley have made a name for himself with his 60s pyschedelia inspired band, Darker My Love.
I really like the intro song, "And By Always", which sounds like a woman is singing on this reverse guitar playing song. I also like it when Presley focus more on lyrics and minimal acoustics, in particular "You Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory".
Most of the album plays pretty straight album, except for "The Mexican Twins/Life is...Too $hort". This isn't so much a song, more like ranting poetry for the first part, followed by the "Life is too short" portion.
If you like sixties pop rock, with lots of heady lyrics, you'll love White Fence. You can find out details about obtaining the album through White Fence's record label, Woodist Records.