The Fresh & Onlys: Secret Walls EP (Sacred Bones) | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
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The Fresh & Onlys

Secret Walls EP

Sacred Bones

Jun 16, 2011 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


It’s widely accepted that the prolific nature of the reigning garage rock bands spurting out of San Francisco and Brooklyn (seeming sister cities in the current indie scene’s lockdown on all that is rocking) is tied to their expedited recording processes. Using little more than a four-track—or any other form of cheap, easy-to-use equipment—these guys spin off singles, EPs, and full-length records at a rate that can be dizzying. The Fresh & Onlys, one of the best of the bunch, dispel that notion on their new EP, Secret Walls.

Continuing their path toward more thought out methods of putting their songs to wax, the tunes get stronger, the melodies more adhesive, the arrangements even approaching lush. On the opening title track, frontman Tim Cohen (who also heads up his own solo career, pushing the limits of the term “prolific”) croons about disappearing behind—duh—secret walls amidst a crest of ringing acoustic guitars and plinking pianos that would otherwise sound out of place for the fuzz-covered group, but instead work wondrously due to a stellar band’s songwriting skills and craft reaching a peak. With “Keep Telling Everybody Lies,” off-kilter, deadpan vocal harmonies create an ethereal glow that lifts the song from beautiful to unsettling on the spin of a dime.

On Secret Walls, the Fresh & Onlys prove that a band's ability to record a smattering of gems isn’t entirely bound by the heady speed in which they record them. Quantity and quality need not be mutually exclusive here. (www.myspace.com/thefreshonlys)

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