by Jonathan Bannister (@j_utah)
Summer is in full swing and the heat is the kind that can drive people to commit desperate acts. Out in the swamps of Florida the humidity won’t just swallow your will to live, it’ll swallow your soul. Miami’s Heavy Drag might know something about these things. Their debut album Sábana Ghost feels at home in that sticky world. The album comes out this Friday, July 22, and we’re happy to premiere it for you today courtesy of Limited Fanfare.
Heavy Drag’s sound is sinister and damp. The album hangs heavy with feelings of no good done in tropical climes. Only this isn’t the glitz of Michael Mann’s Vice. This is the dank and dark you’d likely find Rust Cohle doing his true detecting. They’re a band that sounds like their name. They would be right at home on a bill with True Widow and The Black Angels. Their sound putting you in a trance in some dingy, packed club where you’re covered in sweat. Sábana means bed sheet (bed sheet ghost) but there is no indication the album's ghosts are the make believe sort. There are real spirits at work here.
The album was recorded and mixed by Ryan Heft of fellow Miami scene rockers Wrong. It was recorded in a matter of days but you wouldn’t know it listening to it. The sound is full and warm. Guitarist Andreas Wong Chong and bassist Michael Ruiz share vocal duties, usually at the same time. Solange Sarria also provides vocals on tracks like "Kinda Slow" and "S 2 9" (I think) that work well with the sound. Jacob Israel is on guitar and Andres Bedoya is on drums rounding out the band with tom heavy beats and fuzzed out bright tones. The album sounds full but not cluttered, each part distinct. The album is sensual, seductive with its darkness. Standout tracks like "Kinda Slow," "Strangle the Neck of Time," and "House of Leaves" envelop you in their embrace.
Listen to the album below. You can pre-order the album on Limited Fanfare’s site. Limited to 500 copies on vinyl, 150 of which are in gorgeous translucent purple. Pick it up and let it be the soundtrack to your summer nights, when there’s no longer fun in the sun, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still have a good time.