Psych-rock has never really gone out of fashion entirely, but it has spent time in various states of obscurity, lurking in the clouds of reverb and delay that characterize and float through genres like shoegaze and post-rock. However, psych fans are currently enjoying an unprecedented revival of bands aping the vintage-inspired space sounds of the late '60s with fresh twists and modern energy.
We recently attended Austin Psych Fest, a festival that features a highly curated lineup focusing on bringing together the absolute best artists, old and new, in the colliding worlds of psychedelia, garage-rock, and anything else that can fit into the invariably creative psych bubble. California's Froth -- a band that's part of the Burger Records collective whose roster is making perhaps the biggest waves in garage rock right now -- performed at one of the festival's preview nights to a capacity crowd at the Mohawk and were the recipients of much of the weekend's buzz. Fortunately for South Florida's denizens of reverb and fuzz, the band is making the rounds this weekend and kicked things off last night by affording Respectable Street's Thursday night Flaunt party with a sorely needed dose of art rock mayhem.
The bar's patio was clamoring with people that came out to see what the hype was about and Froth delivered in spades.
Frontman, JooJoo Ashworth, struck up the fits with a bit of a jangling 12-string guitar that morphed perpetually between classic Brit twang and sputtering fuzz over the band's hypnotic rhythms. The bystanders that crept into the bar, many donning suits and bits of bro-swag, appeared quite taken aback by Froth's rocked up brand of classic psych, and soon joined the rest of the crowd in bobbing heads and dancing about to the band. From our perspective, the set was not anticipated by many, and the moment seemed to be most immediate and revelatory for some.
The band played as a trio last night, missing omnichordist Jeff Fribourg, but drenched in a realm of coalescing colors provided by the people of Drippy Eye Projections, who worked with liquid colors and hand gestures to make the vibe just right. Ashworth, along with bassist and Wellington, FL, ex-pat Jeremy Katz and drummer Cameron Allen, romped through a bevy of tracks from the band's debut full length, Patterns, but the highpoint was undoubtedly the performance of "Lost My Mind," a track that floated and teased with a lazy groove for just long enough before blasting into a surf-rock inspired rollick that had a few people in the patio crowd giving the dancers in the bar itself a run for their money.
Froth will be performing at Gramps tonight in Miami and we suggest you check them out before you no longer have the chance to see such a rad band in such intimate environments.