by Jonathan Bannister (@j_utah)
Wellness is a relatively new solo project of former Howler frontman, Jordan Gatesmith. Mall Goth is the second EP put out under the Wellness moniker and is coming out April 6th courtesy of Forged Artifacts. We’re stoked to premiere the EP in full for you here.
Mall Goth is an apt description of the music contained on the EP, with production that lends it a slight mall speaker quality like it’s some kind of lo-fi pop doom being piped in on a pirate feed. Psych, shoegaze, and bedroom pop all tint these melodic tidbits of solipsistic gloom, like Ariel Pink crossed with your favorite post-punk revivalists.
Opener "Fake Flowers" is a full fledge summer afternoon doing nothing at all jam. A blast of filtered sunlight penetrating that break in the blackout curtains, kicking up the dust motes of memories. "Moon in Libra" kicks it up a notch with its Gun Club lead guitar tone and tape like warp and wobble. "Get Me Out of My Way" is "Rock Lobster" for the disaffected as it bounces along on its infectious guitar line at a quick clip, compelling you to move, only to leave the party as quickly as it arrived. "Sippin on Sadness" is quite funny with its earnest goth sounds juxtaposed with lyrics about all the various travails Gatesmith encounters in a day in L.A. "Killer Instincts" strips it down, never really resolving as it relies on drums and a plucky guitar part before expanding out with some synth halfway through. "Purge" is a wall of noise, with the reverb cranked to 11, and the whammy bars in full use.
Turned inward, a touch on the experimental side, and at turns dark while never losing its wit, Mall Goth is a blast of fetid, stale air that you’ll want to breathe in time and again this spring. Put on your best blacks and step out into the light.
Wellness' Mall Goth is out April 6th via Forged Artifacts.