A return to dated roots seems increasingly recurrent in punk and experimental musicians these days, especially among those affiliated with the Sacred Bones family. Austin punk outfit Institute, comprised of members of Glue, Wiccans, and Back to Back, just announced their debut LP, titled Catharsis, on the vanguard label and its first single indicates an exploration of an older, perhaps simpler sound than the combined members other bands would suggest. Similar to the southern retroactive stylistics of eclectic radicals-turned-rockers, and now labelmates, Cheena, “Perpetual Ebb” almost immediately betrays its title (which would imply a lack of flow, no?), as simplistic, clean-sounding guitars push forward with a banger rhythm; its two main chords separated by a certain twanged pull on a string that electrocutes the hips. Singer Moses Jones belts out his in nonchalance over the coasting beat. Pre-chorus and chorus guitars tone back even further, highlighting the muffled bass sound, and offer short glimpses of their fingers’ abilities with intricate and intoxicating solo fills before enthralling back into the excitement of the main theme. The lyricism of the track, and subsequent album, also betray the fun nostalgia of the sound, as Jones notes the songs revolve around his “thorough disappointment in himself” (paraphrased). Catharsis, indeed.
Catharsis will be available June 9 on Sacred Bones. You can stream “Perpetual Ebb” below.