Local Wire

Psych 101

We need some Quaaludes. We can't stop listening to Phoenix rock trio Psych 101's Attachment Disorder, and it's totally messing with our heads. All of its danceable dirges are giving us delusions: that Joy Division brought Ian Curtis back from the dead and made a reunion record, that the Moody Blues and David Bowie once collaborated over some Indiana ditch weed on a slow night at the local Laundromat, that somebody swiped Syd Barrett's last lyrics and delivered them to a depressed, half-drunk Evan Dando. Psych 101 throws various substances into its sound — psychedelic burnout guitar, goth-bop beats, snaky bass, spaced-out synthesizers — and the mix is addictive. From the meditative but melancholy "Transcendence" to the lullaby lament "Watching Paint Dry" to the howling, subdued boogie of "Even Now," the unifying vibe is sadness. Even while front man Jeff Miller (who handles guitar, keyboard, and vocals) sings "Having the time of my life" on the song "Trainwreck" over burly bass hooks, he's totally deadpan. "Enough" is the best song on the CD, laying Leonard Cohen-ish baritone vocals down over a Dark Wave-meets-New Wave groove. We're bopping our heads, but now our frontal lobes are all forlorn. 'Ludes, man.

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Niki D'Andrea has covered subjects including drug culture, women's basketball, pirate radio stations, Scottsdale staycations, and fine wine. She has worked at both New Times and Phoenix Magazine, and is now a freelancer.
Contact: Niki D'Andrea