Porches returns with Ricky Music, a further refinement in Aaron Maine’s dedication to making 80s inspired indie pop and dance music on his computer.
A less broken record than 2018’s uneven but excellent The House and more experimental than 2016’s near perfect Pool, Ricky Music might just be the most Porches Porches album yet.
Lead single “Do U Wanna”, “I Wanna Ride” and “Madonna” are all homespun dance excellence. Standout track “Lipstick Song” begins with bass and synth heavily indebted to Julee Cruise’s “Falling” before the arrangement grows denser with programmed beats, FM synthesizers, and flourishes of cutting guitar leads.
“PFB” is a regrettably short 33 second snippet reminiscent of Guided by Voices, replete with blown out drums, DI’d guitar and plenty of warble. The track rocks in a way Maine hasn’t really rocked since his pre-Porches output with Space Ghost Cowboys.
Porches’ most alluring asset continues to be Aaron Maine’s melancholy croon. Whether singing delicately or belting, he always sounds like the saddest guy in the room. I can’t think of anyone that can sell a line like “do you wanna cry? I boo hoo,” but I bought it on “Hair.” The same song contains a certified gem that is hard not to relate to: “I’m kinda pretty, kinda busted too.”