“Faces” – the Happy Hollows

The L.A.-based Happy Hollows return to Fingertips with an itchy-crunchy bit of indie rock enlivened by Sarah Negahdari’s pixie-ish (but full-throttled) vocals and slashing guitar work. As intermittently discussed here, the rock trio can be a wondrous beast, especially when veering towards the noisy side of things. Because even at high volume, a trio always announces itself discretely: each part–guitar, bass, drum–is unavoidably and distinctly heard, each an important third of the sound. While there is (duh) room in the rock world for larger ensembles, the trio, when properly talented (I can imagine there is on the other hand little more discouraging than a mediocre trio), has the feeling of something archetypal.

What grabs me here in particular? Hmm. This seems to be one of those songs that I intuitively gravitate to without a conscious sense of why. Sure, I could probably retrofit an explanation but first of all that seems like cheating, and also, I think, part of the charm here is the song’s holistic power. It’s not one or another thing in particular, it’s the everything altogether. Though, okay, I do specifically like the second line of the chorus, both the interesting chord it veers onto and the way Negahdari’s voice hits a new level of vehemence just around then. It’s the kind of shift that registers more unconsciously than consciously with the listener, and adds to the general sense of engagement. With this listener, at least.

“Faces” is the opening track from the band’s forthcoming full-length debut, Spells, scheduled for an October release.




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