With so many bands out there creating music, it’s incredibly simple for bands to slip under the radar of even the most attuned music fans. Pinback is one of many such under-the-radar bands. You wouldn’t notice their delicate dream pop unless your eyes were keenly focused in their direction. It’s not that their music doesn’t warrant attention. It most certainly does. Music like this doesn’t “grab” attention—it politely asks for it, never forgetting “please” and “thank you.”
Started as a side project for Zach (Armistead Burwell Smith IV), Pinback has evolved into a more serious focus for him and partner Rob (Robert Rulon Crow Jr). With a full-length album under their belt, another one in the making, and countless other band memberships on their musical résumés, Pinback definitely have the dedication it takes to become more than a blip on the screen.
Some Voices, Pinback’s new four-song EP, cultivates a gloomy, yet hopeful atmosphere. Based on piano, but also employing guitars, cello and a small family of drum loops, Zach and Rob develop complex, layered melodies. Breathy vocals spin mystical little stories in just under 16 minutes. “Manchuria” makes good use of an organ, giving this song a pleasant, Supertramp feel. This one could slither into the rotation of a ‘70s format radio station without anyone really noticing.
The last line on the EP makes you wonder if Pinback might be hungering for even a little recognition. “It’s up to the trees with the fire storm,” proclaims “June.” Now it’s Tree Records turn to promote these guys to no end with their “fire storm” of publicity. Hmm…maybe I’m reading into that a bit too much. After all, it’s not so bad to be a low-flying aircraft. I’m sure Pinback could attest to that.