By Jamie McNamara
It’s hard not to draw a parallel between Tame Impala’s Kevin Parker and the frontman of Methyl Ethyl, Jake Webb. Both hail from the isolated city of Perth, Australia, both started their respective bands as a means to home record studio experiments and solo material before blossoming into full bands, and with their latest albums, both have mastered the art of blending heady atmospheres with pop song structures.
Those surface level comparisons are where the similarities end. Where Tame Impala use pop-leaning psychedelia to focus inward on the neurosis of Kevin Parker, Webb and his two bandmates expand outwards on their sophomore, 4AD album Everything is Forgotten. Where Parker gains his inspiration from The Beatles, Webb probably learnt more from the Cocteau Twins and MGMT.
Everything is Forgotten is hooky dream pop that channels the explosive energy of Cocteau Twins into tightly wound funk-indebted indie pop.
Tracks like the opener “Drink Wine,” sound like early-10s’ peak-Robyn mixed with Purple Rain-era Prince, all strutting basslines and strobing synthesizers. Lead single “Ubu,” is a catchy piece of indie pop, occupying a space in between the bedroom funk of Unknown Mortal Orchestra and the doomed post punk of Preoccupations.
Still, even if it’s easy to heap praise on Everything is Forgotten, it doesn’t come without its detractions like “No .28,” a song that sounds like a flabby Hot Hot Heat B-side, or the orchestral, piano pop leanings of “Femme Maison/One Man House” that feel like Ben Kweller did a collab with Fall Out Boy circa-“Sugar We’re Going Down.”
Songs like “Act of Contrition” and “Groundswell” pick the album back up, reaching some of the best pop moments of the year so far. Even with its missteps, Everything is Forgotten is a confident sophomore effort, solidifying the sound of a band that has a bright future.Everything is Forgotten, Methyl Ethyl