Alex Bleeker and the Freaks is set to release his sophomore album, How Far Away. Most out there will focus on the fact that the Freaks is a side band for Real Estate bassist Jackson Pollis, or that it features Woods’ Jarvis Tanviere, but the focal point should be on the band’s name: Alex Bleeker. It his with Bleeker that the direction is set and the project comes together.
How Far Away opens with “Don’t Look Down”, which immediately sets the tone somewhere between an obvious collage of Woodsist artists, but also hints (thanks to Bleeker’s light narrative and slightly airy, slightly southwestern-tinged vocals) of Little Wings brilliance.
“Don’t Look Down” features a bit of southern jangle guitar with a great laid back swagger and solid organ accompaniment. There’s a lot going on just below the surface; it’s not immediately apparent due to Bleeker’s unique vocals. Then there are the borderline self-pitying lyrics:
“Don’t look back on the way we met/ don’t look back at me now/ don’t retract all the things you’ve said/ don’t back out on me.”
The song sets the tone for How Far Away, which includes plenty of other greats including “Home I Love”, “Who Are You Seeing?” and “Rhythm Shakers”. To sum it up, Alex Bleeker and the Freaks is like a supergroup of Woodsist names fronted by a guy influenced slightly by Little Wings. In other words: Freaking awesome.
How Far Away is out soon on Woodsist.