I’ve always felt the mark of a truly good band isn’t the outward hat tips to those who’ve come before them but, rather, the sly winks. Lore City is like that. They’re not concerned with drawing comparisons to established alt rock acts. Their hypnotic and often haunting songs speak for themselves. But they do give us a few surprises in their collection Kill Your Dreams. One is their use of the steel guitar, an instrument that used to be a staple in country music. I can’t say I’ve ever heard it in alt rock. Another is a moody, textured sound reminiscent of Pink Floyd, a groove that is near and dear to this girl. As a teen in south Florida, I checked out a number of times with friends and a dime bag listening to ‘Dark Side of The Moon.’
Lore City is comprised of vocalist Laura Mariposa and guitarist Eric Bessel, former art school classmates who reconnected in 2011 after six years apart. They recorded their first album then with Grammy Award-winning producer William Russel. It made quite an impression on college radio but, as Bessel explains, it wasn’t the record the felt they had in them.
“This album has been eight years in the making,” he says. And it shows. For fans of this genre, each song is a strong one. There is no filler here. The lead-off track, Gone Past, gives us our first taste of Mariposa’s vocal style. The goosebumps it elicits stay with you throughout even as tempos change. Hush, which I was secretly hoping was a remake of the classic Deep Purple song, nevertheless still delivers with Bessel’s guitar playing. Slingshot, one the collection’s stronger pieces, showcases the talent of the duo. But my favorite – Glitter on the Garbage – stuck a tone with me. The lyrics remind us that we can bury our sins but they always come back. People will see them – like glitter on garbage.
There are eight tracks on Kill Your Dreams (nine if you get the digital download.) Each of them is unique in their own right. So light your candles and prepare yourself for a surreal music journey.