When: Tue., Feb. 23, 9 p.m. 2016
Portland has been known to churn out a number of interesting bands and Radiation City is definitely among them. Starting as a relationship between singer/keyboardist Lizzy Ellison and guitarist Cameron Spies, Radiation City had a quiet, quaint beginning getting a push start from DIY record label Apes Tapes. However, soon after, the West Coast outfit were signed for their “Jetsons-era doo wop,” dreamy pop fluorescents and nostalgic bossa nova leanings. Even their harmonies can hold a candle to some of the best harmony-based groups as Ellison’s voice ricochets between an earnest croon and wistful timbres to slow-burning vocal leads. Now, a few albums in, their newest effort Synesthetica proves that they are able to coalesce their ’90s Stereolab influences without losing their pop flare. Each song radiates with glistening synths and lush choruses, all accompanied by ’60s-era harmonies. Songs like “Juicy” and “Fancy Cherries” boast sheets of vocal melodies, while “Come and Go” has bossa beats mixed in with sinuous jazz solos. While The Hand that Takes You and Animals in the Median returned with lackluster results, Synesthetica proves Radiation City is more confident and wily than ever. With Deep Sea Diver and Pop Pistol.