by Colin Vallee (@colinjbeard)
The sun is OUT today in New York and I mean OUT. Short shorts, short sleeves, no sleeves even, and I'm in a basement. I got to go outside briefly for lunch and blast France Camp into my ears like four times before I was shunted back into this basement to take passport photos for students going overseas.
France Camp describes themselves as "Four Pretty Strong Biceps" which could be any kind of permutations for a four member band from Minneapolis. Do they each have one really strong arm? Which arm is it? Are only two members buff? The questions are endless but their new EP Dark Floral just flippin' rips. In fact, the only person to comment on their Bandcamp page for their last record Purge offers this gem, "I just like it." Couldn't have said it better myself, but I have to cause that's what I do.
The album opens with “Your Bicep,” a fuzzed out track that reminds me of some of my favorite Joanna Gruesome songs and immediately veers into The Memories meets La Luz territory. This music is so happy to exist, and you can really feel that in every aspect of the song construction here. The chorus (refrain?) here "Baby I really love ya / Oh Baby I really love ya" isn't breaking any new ground when it comes to exploring that age old emotion but does it need to? Simple lines like this often hinge on delivery and the music around it to be effective and France Camp have both down to a science.
Much of Dark Floral carries on the way opener “Your Bicep” does; concise, focused, fuzzy and fun as hell. The title track here marks a slightly darker take on that sunny fuzz pop, and the song “My Life in Egypt” has a super cool riff that I will immediately try and learn when I get home.
This is an EP you can skate to. This is an EP you can bake and get baked to. This EP will ask for your number and then be cool with you if you turn it down, and eventually become a pretty cool friend. Dark Floral is France Camps fourth release overall, and their second on label extraordinaire Forged Artifacts.