- by Steve Rhodes Release Date:2017-04-22 Label: Schoolkids
Ah Record Store Day, a lovely initial concept that helped bolster small independent record shops and helped promote vinyl releases by a number of smaller artists, but has since been flooded by major record companies peddling often pointless limited edition exclusives of previously-released material. Thankfully there is room this year for a new 2-track release from North Carolina's The Veldt. Let by twin brothers Daniel and Danny Jarvis, the Veldt are a band that seemed to escape many people's radar, including mine, during their 90s heyday, but have re-appeared and been re-evaluated for their importance as innovators in music, but who emerged from the wilderness last year with an excellent new EP and a glorious performance at Liverpool's International Festival of Psychedelia.
'Symmetry' is a perfect introduction to The Veldt's sound. Danny's gorgeous chiming heartfelt and echo-drenched guitars direct from the songbook of Robin Guthrie, polite electronic drumming, distant keys and high-end bass support Daniel's soulful and blissful vocals. From the melodic end of Fuck Buttons and like a tripped-out Long Fin Killie, the song is achingly hypnotic, but it's Daniel's voice that sends the song into the stratosphere, especially in the ascending chorus as his falsetto rivals David McAlmont in a massive-echo chamber and will send the shudders down any spine.
'Slow Grind' is more of a departure, the delayed guitars still bleed beautifully throughout the track, washing it with waves of fuzz, but the track is trippier and dreamier, as processed beats and bass add a dub element to proceedings. Daniel's lullaby-esque vocals are muffled and used more as an instrument, with a feel of AR Kane, Disco Inferno and Aarktica, but especially akin to Seefeel's More Like Space EP.
It's easy to see why The Veldt are considered pioneers. While they always seemed a little out of place during their heyday, they were a perfect bridge to Shoegazers past and today's evolvers and imitators, such as TV On The Radio, Diiv and The Twilight Sad. Symmetry/Slow Grind is a fantastic record and will hopefully get The Veldt more recognition, which would be the least that they deserve.