Yet another post about a band that is as indie and obscure as they are difficult to Google, Gardens & Villa have a weird knack for sounding like 20 influences at once. Occasionally the bassline will sound like it’s been ripped right out of a Curtis Mayfield record, while a sporadic flute solo takes you back to 5th century China and then in a flash, the synth sounds, “very much like the music of the Human League” – Howard Moon (2004).
I was originally hesitant to write about this band just yet, only because I’ve already done three or four articles on bands from Brooklyn. I was surprised to read that Gardens & Villa hale from, of all places, Santa Barbara (California). Their sound is just too menacing and calculated to come from such a sunny, easy going place, although people might make the same mistake when they guess where Seekae are from.
They are signed to Secretly Canadian (easily the best record label name I’ve heard for a while) and released their self-titled debut album in July last year. I could probably list about 30 bands and artists off the top of my head that I could hear coming through on the album, but much un-like over-drawing in Pictionary, the concept is easier realised on a smaller scale. Think Cold War Kids, Wild Beasts, Fleet Foxes, M83 and Neon Indian in a late 70s blender. Go to this guy’s SoundCloud and listen to Cruise Ship, it’s a blues-y masterpiece. In the meantime, check Gardens & Villa out below, they’re great for the music nerd with a short attention span.
Gardens & Villa – Black Hills
Gardens & Villa – Space Time