Saturday at the Southgate House’s Parlour, area Indie band Fake Hands celebrates the release of its first studio project, the EP Here We Are After Dark, which follows a pair of self-recorded and -released efforts.
The five-track release is an excellent introductory calling card for the relatively new band, which features four core members and a handful of others who add horns and other ornamentation to the band’s clever spin on Indie Rock. While largely instrumental (the spooky track “Alexander Davis” features a tiny bit of texture in the form of singing, sounding like the ghost of a My Morning Jacket album creeping in), the band’s sweeping soundscapes are so engaging, you won’t even notice there’s no one singing. Like Post Rock kings Tortoise or expansive Indie Pop crew Aloha, the band’s compositions have a hypnotic fluidity that belies the intricacy and is part of the imaginative surprises present between the dynamic grooves.
Here We Are After Dark kicks off with the military-style marching drum riff and organ drone intro of “Lost in the Crazy Horse,” which rises and falls with inherent sonic dramatics, a pattern that continues throughout the EP. “Love Potion” features twinkling twilight keys and crafty drumming paired with guitar work that moves from dirty, distorted stabs to trickling, echoing riffage that sounds like a distant cousin of vintage Surf guitar. The cyclical guitar lines, ambient keyboards and diverse, musical drumming carry the EP and help give the release its entrancing power.
Fake Hands are engaging enough to be enjoyed in a live setting or on their recordings, but the tracks on After Dark show that they’d also be killer film soundtrack composers, like four young Danny Elfmans raised on a steady diet of The Sea and Cake, Slint and Mogwai.
The band is joined by Justin WW and Animal Circles for Saturday's 9 p.m. show. Admission is $5 for those 21 and up; $7 for attendees 18-20. You can preview or buy (for just $3) After Dark now online at www.fakehands.bandcamp.com.
Below you can take a listen to "Crazy Horse," which is available as a free download on the Bandcamp site.