It takes about a week of college before you’re already bored of all the nostalgia that everybody throws at you. By and large, everybody had a pretty similar childhood, and yes, your friends probably remember what Rainbow Drops are, and you can be pretty much certain that your new, haircut friends watched at least one episode of The raccoons and either liked or disliked Cyril Sneer. It’s chatting about old movies that can be slightly more hit and miss, though. Having to sit through a conversation about Buster’s Day out is tiresome at the best of times, but even worse if you’ve not seen it, and having to chat about Richie Rich is only slightly more mind numbing that having to try and understand a potted review of it. But if there’s one film that is bound to get people putting on the rose tinted glasses, it has got to be the Cool Runnings.
Now, a film about a team of unlikely Jamaican bobsleighers and John Candy is about as far away from the sound of Knoxville’s Coolrunnings as you can get, and thankfully, there isn’t a steel drum or white raggae sound to be heard. References to the seminal christmas movie can be consigned to the student union as the band relentlessly pump out tracks that they then give away for free through bandcamp. Their myspace lists 7 band members, but their sound is no where near as expansive as that number suggests – they are breezy, jangley and sound fresh from the beach. They’ve also got some pedigree in their ranks as well, with Brandon Biondo from the band having also spent some time with the wonderful Royal bangs. There are echoes of that sort of noise here, but with a much more garage rock slant, though with twist
The fact that they’re on Arcade Sound Ltd is hint to the more electronic part of their sound, and the woozy guitar and fuzzy vocals are teamed up with a synth and drum machine to brilliant effect. On the whole, it’s far removed from the world of chillwave and joyful ambience that labelmates Teen Daze and Blackbird Blackbird create, but the slight presence of hazy, neon bliss makes this instantly more exciting than the hordes of vest and cut-off jean wearing, 60’s pop indebted acts that are currently doing the rounds. That they’ve got a load of free music floating around by means of last.fm and bandcamp is the icing on the cake, more than making up for the amount of people you’re going deal with singing ‘Jamaica you-know-we-have-a bobsleigh team’ when you try and pass them on.
Coolrunnings – San Dimas Oasis [last.fm download]
Coolrunnings – When I got high with you [last.fm download]