Their first official release since the drowsy, booger-sugar days of 2012’s I Just Wanna Do Some Coke and Fall Asleep, PBLC return on May 13 with the six track Seagrave EP. Where the first effort was as self-contradicting and all over the place as the title suggests, trading off between pastiche takes on ‘60s surf and the early emo of Cap’n Jazz, Seagrave hones in without losing the cyclonic energy of the 2012 take.
Tone Rodriguez’s no-fi vocals set the mood for the EP, tossing incoherent lyrics over cutthroat guitar and long, undercutting synths. It’s a peculiar listening experience, hearing Rodriguez’s voice in murky, almost alien language, catching only the occasional word and knowing only that he means them.
Seagrave’s finest moments occur when PBLC bring in guest musicians to toss their creative energies into the vortex. “Uvas de la Vida” features saxophonist Eddie Vasquez (of SA free jazz trio the Whale) on a ride with PBLC, his looped alto sax tremors swerving in and out of time. On “Peach Blouse,” PBLC tone it down without losing the weirdo factor, with Heidi Moore on violin and Shan Blam on viola to complement the tune’s closing drone. Rising to the occasion, PBLC seem to define their sound in contrast to their guests.
Since the recording of Seagrave, PLBC has slimmed down to a trio and will perform their angular EP material at a Hi-Tones release party on Friday, May 16 ($3, 621 E Dewey, (210) 785-8777).