Dream pop is often so sleepy that it is served best as background music to party to, or something to go to bed with. Haunted Summer defies that notion by delivering a richly textured sound that should be listened to at high volumes to catch all the nuance. The husband-wife duo of John Seasons and Bridgette Eliza Moody collaborate with various musicians to create their uniquely lavish electronic sound. They have taken quite the departure from simply covering Animal Collective songs to creating a lush sound that is all their own. It has that magical quality of being simultaneously hazy and musically precise. The music takes on a particularly angelic feel because of Moody’s beautifully haunting voice. Like a less skittish Björk, her vocals weave in front and behind of the synthesised soundscape. This is outdoorsy music for people who don’t like folk.
Their 2013 EP Something In The Water displayed their unique talents, with the sumptuous opening track “All Around,” and the title track as highlights to the five song collection. The rest of the songs are by no means filler, with “1996” having an especially nostalgic trippiness to it. The band recently got together with Ninkaski Brewing to produce a 180 gram red vinyl edition of Something In The Water that will surely sell plenty of copies, and expose their music to a wider audience. It would be a nice advancement from the cassette tape release Birth, which while trendy, really does not carry the same weight as a vinyl record. The minor resurgence of tapes will likely prove short lived, unless companies decide to start mass producing cassette players again.
A recent social media update suggests that the band is working on new material. It would be nice to see a complete album from Haunted Summer that could potentially put them on the national stage, and enable them to book some of the larger venues next summer. »
– Scott McHale
Catch Haunted Summer live in Portland this month August 5 at Holocene