Founded in 2014, Pearl Earl is the neo-psychedelic rock project of multi-instrumentalist and singer/songwriter Ariel Hartley. In addition to Bailey K Chapman, Stefanie Lazcano, Chelsey Danielle, Teddy Georgia Waggy and Leeza V. the band originally consisted of three members. Since Hartley‘s band was born as a project on her early college laptop, it has evolved and changed constantly. While evoking a sense of nostalgia for golden-era glam rock and spacey prog, Pearl Earl forges its own psychedelic territory. With ominous grins on their faces and captivating live performances, this band was once described as “Pink Floyd in the Sunlight”. They have toured across the U.S. with Death Valley, Girls, Oh Sees, Post Animal, The Black Angels, Acid Dad, Frankie, and The Witch Fingers, and played major festivals such as Levitation and SXSW. Currently based in Los Angeles and north Texas, Pearl Earl released their sophomore album titled “It’s Dread” on June 22nd via Green Witch Recordings in NYC. Apocalyptic worlds are explored in this dark music album, recorded by Tomas Dolas (Mr. Elevator, Oh Sees) at Studio 22.
Consisting of ten songs, “It’s Dread” is an outstanding collection of psychedelic and trippy sounds. Let’s take a closer look at each one, shall we? The opening track “Damage Control” is an excellent introduction to the album. Electric guitars blast us from the very beginning, a chaotic rhythm followed by Ariel’s soothing voice. We get out of the eye of the storm and are thrown back into chaos, a complete roller coaster of emotions. A squealing symphony of woozy synths and reverberating rhythms. “Evil Does It” is the first album single, a laid-back, drunkenly rhythmic, swinging pace shows that this isn’t a track that takes itself too seriously. “It’s Dread” is easily the most interesting song on the album. Sharing its title, the song has a strong vintage vibe all over it. The song features a catchy hook and a groovy guitar solo, making it one of the most memorable moments of the album. It’s a perfect example of how the band can mix different elements and styles to create something unique. “Aliens Brew” is a completely instrumental intermission. The guitar is excellent, perfectly blended with the plethora of sounds presented, while we get no lyrics. This one is my personal favorite. Following that, we hear “Slime Green”, which is upbeat and lighthearted. You can’t expect anything else with a name like that. This track is a striking contrast to the previous one, providing a more carefree sound. The guitar sounds are still present, but they’re much more subtle. The song ends with an awesome jam session that will leave everyone wanting more. “Full Moon Power” could easily be the intro song to a 70’s TV show. It’s a fun, groovy track that brings a smile to your face. The synth and horns combine to create a classic sound that is easy to dance to. The overall feeling of the song will make you feel like you’re in a different time. “Jock Goth” is an odd one. Guitars take a back seat, electronic sounds take the forefront. Ariel’s voice is distorted giving an almost robotic feel to it. Everything feels alien and weird but in a good way. “Baby Blue Looks Good On Mars” is the most danceable song of the bunch. The energy of the song is infectious and you can’t help but dance to it. It’s a fun and upbeat song that gets you moving. With an ominous title “You’re Not A God” feels light like a feather. Again, the synths are emphasized. The song builds up with a chilled-out rhythm that feels like a dream. The chorus swells and crashes in a beautiful and captivating way. And we finally reach the end with “Miss Milky Way’s Mental Breakdown”. This one gets a gold star for the most creative title. Guitars are making a comeback and oh boy, what a comeback they make. The song ends strong and rocking, leaving us wanting more. It’s an excellent way to end such a fantastic album.
“It’s Dread” It’s quite a trip. A very exciting piece of music, worth listening to and highly recommended. This year, the band is now touring the US. If you’re around don’t miss them! Dates here!