Photo by Angela Holtzen / Review by Ziv Biton
White Fence, in a very short amount of time, has become the third piece of the prolific trifecta of noise/garage rock that has steadily been budding in Los Angeles via San Francisco. It seems that California rock has been almost totally dominated by this trinity of Thee Oh Sees, Ty Segall and White Fence. Granted, this is mostly due to the relentless churning out of records by all the groups mentioned, but the quantity would be meaningless if there was anything less than astute quality control. With For The Recently Found Innocent, the fifth long player since his 2010 debut as White Fence, Tim Presley showcases his consistency as well as his growth. The record plays like a collage of 60’s rock influences, many of which Presley wears on his bright neon sleeves. At points he conjures Buffalo Springfield, at others The Who. Songs here are kept in the “under three minute” length and feel precisely focused. Subjects drift between actors, wolfmen and the earth dying, the latter of which is sung in an ‘it’s to be expected’ deadpan (man.)
Why We Like Them: This is very much the California sound of our time. If Thee Oh Sees are sharpening the punk knives in the kitchen and Segall is perpetually attempting to tidy up the garage, then Presley is the surfer kid with the most sun in his bedroom.
“Like That” is a sugary dose of optimistic pop sung from the depths of hopelessness. Presley sings, “Clean and full and never hungry, want to live like that. Pay for things and not feel sickened, want to live like that!” If you’ve ever felt the sting of a twenty-dollar grocery bill you know exactly what he’s talking about (stream the song below).
“The Light” is Presley’s take on the high-octane punk most often heard from Thee Oh Sees. Just try to listen to the first 20 seconds without expecting Dwyer’s rabid yelp. Go ahead, I’ll wait. It’s an exciting and exuberant listen and shows the extent of White Fence’s abilities, much of which has yet to be explored.
“Raven On White Cadillac” is a jangly, limp-haired exploration of 60’s blues. In the background a crisp piano plays a saloon melody throughout, and swaying guitars bust through the swinging doors making quick appearances and even faster exits. Presley holds it all together singing, “Lay on your side, and dreams come alive.” I couldn’t agree more.
You can stream White Fence’s new album, For The Recently Found Innocent, via NPR.
Upcoming Tour Dates:
07-12 San Francisco, CA – Phono Del Sol
07-24 Los Angeles, CA- Echo ¢
07-25 Los Angeles, CA- Echo #
08-05 Big Sur, CA – Woodsist Festival @ Henry Miller Library
10-13 Brooklyn, NY- Baby’s All Right
10-14 Allston, MA- Great Scott ^*
10-15 Montreal, QC- Il Motore *
10-16 Toronto, ON- The Garrison *
10-17 Cleveland, OH- Happy Dog *
10-18 Chicago, IL- Subterranean *
10-19 Buffalo, NY- Tralf Music Hall *
10-20 Baltimore, MD- The Metro Gallery *
10-21 Philadelphia, PA- Underground Arts *
10-23 Kingston, NY – BSP Lounge !
* = King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
^ = Juan Wauters
% = Woodsist Festival with Woods, Angel Olsen, Skygreen Leopards, Kevin Morby
# = w/ Tomorrows Tulips, Cold Beat
¢ = w/ Dream Boys, Abigails
For The Recently Found Innocent
Street Date: July 22, 2014
1 The Recently Found
2 Anger! Who Keeps You Under?
3 Like That
4 Sandra (When the Earth Dies)
5 Wolf Gets Red Faced
6 Goodbye Law
7 Arrow Man
9 Hard Water
10 The Light
11 Afraid of What’s It’s Worth
13 Raven On White Cadillac
14 Paranoid Bait