Somewhere in the course of 18 studio albums, Of Montreal became a weirdness-obsessed veteran of indie rock. The band’s latest pushes some of the same thematic boundaries as their body of work, plus a few new musical ones.
Like an easy summer with a little overdrive, Sunbathe’s self-titled debut coasts along on an abundance of hooks and lighthearted guitar, bearing a resemblance to All Dogs or P.S. Eliot in ways that I love. Easing in with the slow, dark build of “I Can’t Find It,” the album picks up with “Magic Number” and “With a Little Help,” both reining you in with catchy melodies.
The lyrics and stoned out dark-pop musicality can’t be missed. The words are honest about what sounds like lovers come and gone with a hint of unresolved feelings, and Maggie Morris (also front woman of Genders) isn’t shy with her delivery. I’m singing along by the second song. The story she tells is relatable in what she says and how she says it, carried by a bass groove that holds it down and complimented by bright lead guitar for flavor. Laced with tremolo and reverb, every instrument I tune into as the album goes on plays an interesting part but never goes so far as to clash with another.
If you’re on the hunt for your next road trip album, or just trying to relive what summer felt like as winter looms on, look no further. Sunbathe lives up to its namesake–you’d have a similar experience laying in the sun on a good day as you would listening to this album all in one go.