While I haven’t written about Portland’s Pure Bathing Culture directly, they’ve already become mainstays on both my regular playlist and on my KSVR / KSVU weekly radio show. The duo of Daniel Hindman and Sarah Versprille create quite a full pop sound for there being just two. Early on, I became a big fan of their track “Ivory Coast” off their self-titled, debut EP, out now on Father/Daughter Recordings.
I’ve stated directly that I find it a bit odd that the band, with their name, released their debut EP on a label called Father/Daughter Records. Slightly awkward. But the music Pure Bathing Culture creates is anything but; it in, in fact, pure bliss!
In four brief songs, this little band produces a big, positive impression. Versprille takes the lead on vocals, while Hindman accompanies with cool, laid-back pop guitar riffs. All of it, catchy. “Silver Shore’s Lake” follows the fun opener “Lucky One” with a hint of 80s pop sensibilities masked in modern cool. The song is an instant favorite.
Beginning the second half is the now infamous (at least for me) “Ivory Coast”. This is the song that introduced me to the band, and thus will always hold that special something. It matches “Silver Shore’s Lake” in its ability to draw in the listener. Finally, “Gainesville” concludes the EP, again on a high note.
Recorded by Richard Swift in his National Freedom studio, this far-too-brief EP rings with Swift’s unique sound, full with nostalgia yet other-worldly. And it fits the songs Pure Bathing Culture creates flawlessly. This is easily among the top EPs I’ve heard this year!
What Pure Bathing Culture has created is an EP with four excellent tracks. There is no weak song to be found. All have hold value, all have merit. This is a feat I haven’t heard since, well, probably 2005’s Raised by Wolves by Voxtrot. And, if you know me, you know that EP is one I hold in high esteem!
Father/Daughter Recordings [EP, 2012]
1. Lucky One
2. Silver Shore’s Lake
3. Ivory Coast