Pure Bathing Culture – Moon Tides
Partisan Records
-out Aug. 20
2.5 / 5

It’s dream-pop the duo from Portland, OR makes here, and some of it ain’t that bad. It’s just that, that’s all we get. The beats feel unspectacular, the vocals are good but certainly not great, and the music on the whole doesn’t explore any new territory. From the point of view of “does this add something new to my collection,” Moon Tides is a disappointment.

Take “Pendulum,” the lead single/opener from PBC’s debut full-length, and it’s got a great 80’s sway to it (in addition to a great chorus). But that’s roughly the height here. “Ever Greener” is a drowsy half-sway in comparison, and the percussive backbone – how aggravating! – is nauseatingly light and unimaginative. We may have already said this about jazz, and sometimes it goes for rock and other genres, too: if the bass + drums are good, usually the music is good. PBC could have gotten past the lame rhythm section, but unfortunately they haven’t. Especially on the rigid “Only Lonely Lovers,” awkwardly puttering about.

This is yet more dream-pop for the enthusiast who can’t get enough. But we’re not really going to recommend it beyond that, unfortunately, as it’s just too bland. Take a pass.

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