“Sunshine” – Eatliz

Sometimes I’m just in the mood for something a bit less straightforward, a bit less three-chord-y. But I still want melody; I still want the sense of a band making an effort to engage the ear, versus a band so wrapped (and/or rapt) in its vision that all effort to connect is left to the audience.

At times spacily contemplative and at times grindingly heavy (there are three guitarists at work; watch out!), “Sunshine” offers up some of prog-rock’s sonic vocabulary while avoiding veering off into anything too baroque. Notice, for instance, that for all the rhythmic hijinks on display, the song never strays from its 4/4 beat. Front woman Lee Triffon, meanwhile, sings effectively both at the whispery and the shouty ends of her delivery, avoiding histrionics in both cases. Note the saxophone’s unexpected entrance at 2:04, because the song’s single instrumental spotlight will shine on that under-utilized instrument a minute and a half later, as we are then treated to 40 seconds of rough-toned, reverbed honking. It sounds like early Psychedelic Furs working up a Thelonious Monk tribute.

Eatliz is a six-piece band from Israel, formed in 2001. (In Hebrew, the name apparently means “the butcher shop.”) “Sunshine” is from the band’s debut album, Violently Delicate, which was released in Israel and four European countries in 2008. Their second full-length, Teasing Nature, either came out late in 2010 or is coming out this summer—the web (get used to it) offers contradictory information. The band is currently wrapping up its first-ever North American tour, which started last month at SXSW.