Release Date: Sep 22, 2009
Record label: True Panther Sounds
Genre(s): Indie, Rock
Girls are two boys – Christopher Owens and Chet "JR" White – whose biographies include stories of being born into a cult, millionaire benefactors and addictions to prescription drugs. The duo combine deceptively simple chords and patterns with hazy walls of feedback, Californian pop melodies, surf guitars and Owens's dozy vocal style – which sounds like he's answering a question you asked him yesterday. The result is glorious.
Girls frontman Christopher Owens grew up in the Children of God cult. His older brother died as a baby because the cult didn't believe in medical attention. His dad left. He and his mother lived around the world, and the cult sometimes forced his mother to prostitute herself. As a teenager, Owens ….
For their 2009 debut (simply titled Album), Girls' two free-spirited San Francisco burnouts (one appearing relatively clean-cut, the other greasy-haired and disheveled) JR White and Christopher Owens go for the Mellow Gold with their take on D.I.Y. California pop. Where the similarly blog-touted Wavves offered a pill-popping, pot-fueled skater's perspective on fun in the sun, Girls offer up a similarly thrifty and drug-addled ode to the warm climate, but filtered through a pair of green-tinted hippie shades.
As unconventional musical ensembles go, Girls must surely register at the top of the pile when it comes to spontaneous muddled creations that confound any kind of pre-conceived expectations. Much loved by both the New York art-rock fraternity and UK underground indie scenes alike, this San Francisco duo and their assorted helping hands have somehow managed to conjure up an Album that doesn't just hop between genres at random like an overexcited rabbit, but actually creates its own guessing game in the process, enticing the listener into a rabid frenzy of self-doubt. "What will come next?" indeed.
Album was allegedly created when San Francisco’s Girls were on drugs, but it sounds like the only substances altering these dudes’ consciousnesses were sunshine and rock ‘n’ roll. It’s also a bit hard to put much weight in the drug angle, since these dudes are from San Francisco, a place with weather so nice people in heaven are jealous. It’s not like Girls cut an album on meth in North Dakota because there wasn’t shit else to do.
Californian kids, one of whom was born into a religious cult, refashioning 60s pop for today's pilled-up generation? Not such a bad idea, as it happens, even if it is a bit Spiritualized..
So by now I’m guessing you’ve heard all about Girls. No? Oh come on, where have you been for the past few months? Which hot new band have you been listening to? Ok, a quick recap for the uninitiated – Girls is a San Francisco-based duo comprising Christopher Owens (long hair, languid vocals, Children of God cult background) and Chet “J. R.
Girls Girls, the San Francisco duo of Christopher Owens and J R White, arrives with shoulders shrugged, head slightly down. Its debut album, titled “Album” (True Panther Sounds/Matador), is a lean ramble, in no way ostentatious. Knowingly or not, Mr. Owens has the tender brooding of Buddy Holly ….