Fruit & Flowers - Drug Tax

by Steve Ricciutti Rating:8 Release Date:2017-06-30

Brooklyn’s garage-surf-punk-pop quartet Fruit & Flowers has their debut ready for release, the half dozen EP Drug Tax, and it’s a tasty sampling of their sound.

“Dark Surf” welcomes you with an eerie intro that lulls you into a trance via slinky riffs and hypnotic beats. Singer and bassist Caroline Yoder sings of desperation and loneliness while the guitars of Ana Asnes Becker and Lyzi Wakefield swirl and buzz like a hive. “Down, Down, Down” is a sexy power chord number that slips from a frenzied guitar freak out into a slow harmony fadeout. “Out of Touch” has an irresistible girl-group and surf vibe, while “Pick Fairy,” offers an awesome riff intro that pushes into a pulsing runaway train tempo, fueled by drummer Jose Berrio.

The band does what they do with impressive aplomb for only being together a few years, largely spent honing their craft, or so the evidence would indicate. Wiry feedback, crashing cymbals, hammering bass lines, and wailing guitar are coupled with harmonies to kill for, the latter being the critical element that elevates them above the crowd. Fruit & Flowers have something to keep an eye on going forward. When they come my way, I want to be there.

The closing number “Subway Surfer” is a chugging punk rave-up complete with manic solo on a vintage 1965 Holiday Bobkat (there’s a great video, too). That particular guitar, all retro, rare, and super-cool, serves as an apt metaphor for the sonic gumbo that Fruit & Flowers serves up hot, spicy, and supremely satisfying.

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