Like most bands in Chicagos inclusive music community, Post Animal got their start playing DIY basements and small rock clubs. Between their impressive early releases and their wild live shows which feature the band members sharing lead vocal duties, Post Animal have unquestionably solidified themselves as one of Chicagos most exciting up-and-coming acts. Almost impossible to describe, the Post Animal bond is best observed while foolin' at the merch table after a sweaty show. They look forward to seeing you there, and naturally, becoming your new best friends.
Hot Flash Heat Wave is here to take you away—to put your head in the clouds for a few minutes, if only to enjoy the view. The San Francisco trio of Adam Abildgaard, Nick Duffy, and Ted Davis have built a loyal following and constant buzz over the last several years, with the 2019 EP Mood Ring standing as their most kaleidoscopic work to date. Merging the quintessential melodies of pop's past with contemporary touches to forge something truly unique, Hot Flash Heat Wave is just starting to create their own sonic world.
All three members of Hot Flash Heat Wave have known each other since high school, playing together in various incarnations even while temporarily spreading themselves out across the California landscape after graduating. After a few years in the scene, Abildgaard and Duffy eventually formed the band in 2010: "It was really just for fun," Abildgaard explains. "We were doing it because it felt good." Davis joined the duo shortly thereafter.
The band's 2015 debut Neapolitan was crafted in the SF house they lived in together, with heavy influences from the Bay Area's burgeoning garage rock scene. "We'd get together in the living room, talk about the songs, break into groups and work on the tracks," Abildgaard says. "We were figuring out how to write together and discovering what works best with that process."
The 2017 follow-up Soaked saw Hot Flash Heat Wave loosening up their sound, with lush classic rock and pop influences seeping into their heady brew; it was also their first record where the trio had full autonomy in the studio. "It was an empowering exercise for us as producers, because we had access to a candy land of new equipment," Duffy remembers.
Last year's Mood Ring EP launched the group into another realm entirely—their truest-to-heart release yet, synthesizing a wide range of influences encompassing My Bloody Valentine, Frank Ocean, New Order, and Toro y Moi into something that sounded truly their own. Lead single "Glo Ride" bounces with a slight R&B tilt against a dark, trippy atmosphere, while "Sky So Blue" finds the band spiralling into full-on psychedelia, complete with layers of spell-casting keyboards and a wonderfully zonked-out breakdown.
"It's the first record where we felt fully in charge of our sound and direction," Davis comments on the creative strides made on Mood Ring. "We were writing more personal music, letting go of ideas about what we should sound like and exploring vulnerable, exciting places." And the future only seems brighter from here: with a new LP coming in 2021, Hot Flash Heat Wave is preparing for the next step up the staircase in their absolute blast of a sonic trip, with determination to elevate their craft in the process.
"Everyone wants to be able to listen to a song they relate to when they're feeling down," Abildgaard says when discussing the band's dedication to their music. "When we write these songs, it's like a healing experience for me, and that's what I want others to feel too."
Written by Larry Fitzmaurice
After touring throughout most of 2017 and 2018 with STRFKR, Cults, and Of Montreal, the band returned home and went straight into renowned Portland studio Jackpot to record their sophomore LP,VALIS. Titled after the 1981 Philip K. Dick novel,VALISis a cohesive collection of songs unified in sound and structure and supported by recurring lyrical themes. Reptaliens wanted to recreate the warmth of something personal and familiar, while also providing the listener with the room to create a unique relationship with the music. This duality can be found in the constructs, themes, and imagery portrayed through vocalist and bassist Bambi’s lyrical concepts. Juxtaposed against the backdrop of friendly and lighthearted pop hooks and melodies, Bambi engages her audience through motifs of loneliness, longing, abduction, isolation, and change as well as love and personal connection.
In the throes of the pandemic , Reptaliens released the digital EP,Wrestling, which differs in two major ways from the groups previous releases: It is the first recording project engineered, produced, and mixed entirely by the songwriting duo of Bambi and Cole Browning.It also stylistically differs greatly from anything the band has released before, resulting in a darker and more emotive sound, opting for the heavy use of synths and drum machines in lieu of guitars and drum kits, and paying homage to the minimal wave sound of electronic post-punk.
After the completion of Wrestling, Bambi and Cole moved to a self-sustaining, off-the-grid farm to continue work on new music, and further explore new musical genres with which to expand the high concept world of Reptaliens. With pandemic restrictions lifting, Reptaliens are hitting the road as they gear up for the release of their third full-length album in 2022.