Seattle's The Freehands might consider themselves garage rock, but that's like saying The Pixies are an arena rock band, or Lou Barlow's Sebadoh is just a pop singer/songwriter. Yes, these things may be technically true, but it ignores the subversion and deconstruction that makes these bands special.
There Could Be Mistakes is The Freehands' most ambitious work to date, following several short EPs a few years ago. The Freehands is comprised of humble elements, made up only of Rick Baker's guitar and Chris Reisinger's drums. Their sound, predominantly, is made up of thin and spindly guitars, over Reisinger's bare bones but oh-so-danceable rhythms.
They describe their sound as "garage rock, with a hint of something more." The something more is a kind of post-punk psychedelia - think early The Cure, like “Boys Don't Cry” or "Killing An Arab;" Sebadoh's Bakesale, amalgamating pathos and pop sensibilities; as well as Lou Barlow's dayjob, Dinosaur Jr.
There Could Be Mistakes is poppy garage rock, viewed through a drug-addled lens of smeary emotions. It bears the plastic tang of '90s 8-track indie rock, which, as everyone knows, was indie rock's height, so this alone is a worthy endorsement, especially if you've burned out your Liz Phair and Elliott Smith records.
I don't know what it is, but Seattle-ites just know how to do garage rock. Maybe it's the confluence of working class and avant-garde artsy-ness, as the Pacific Northwest is a bit of both. In the case of There Could Be Mistakes, it makes for strong, catchy songwriting, but with a weird and emotional subtext, which invites multiple listening.
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