Mikey & The Drags, “Spill Your Guts”/“Solstice”

Mikey & The Drags, “Spill Your Guts”/“Solstice”

Alright, so I went into Mikey & The Drags’ official debut release pretty much figuring I’d like it; it just seemed like a foregone conclusion, given how much I already liked the stuff I’d heard from ’em so far, so why worry? And in the end, I definitely do like this 7″, although not for quite the reasons I’d expected to.

See, everything I’d heard up to now’s been live, and it’s all been pretty raw, with feedback, half-muffled drums, and scratched-up vocals — and hey, I was good with that. I like some down-and-dirty, DIY garage-punk as much as anybody; hell, most of the time I get annoyed when garage-y rock is too clean, too polished. So when the 7″ rolled around, I figured: hey, more of the same, should be cool.

And it is, trust me. But unlike the previous stuff I’d heard, the two songs on the record, “Spill Your Guts” and “Solstice,” come out gritty but not too gritty, just clear, pitch-perfect throwbacks to garage-rock icons like The Sonics and (probably moreso) ? and the Mysterians. Those guitars are ragged, to be sure, and frontman Mikey (aka Miguel Ponce) has a nicely rough-edged yawp, but now I’m able to catch every nuance of what the band’s actually doing, rather than just a mess of noise.

“Spill Your Guts,” in particular, has some fine, fine overfuzzed guitar, courtesy of Mikey, great gang-harmony backing vocals, and a rock-solid rhythm section in drummer Andrew Lee and bassist Christopher Oddo. What really gets me, though, Austin Sepulvado’s freaking fantastic organ sound; I swear to God, it sounds like it fell through a hole in time from the ’60s, and it’s flat-out awesome.

“Solstice” speeds things up into a more ferocious stomp, albeit with Mikey downcast and pleading for the girl of his dreams to step back and realize what she’s doing. And then, at the 1:52 mark, the most insanely badass organ melody ever heard in a rock song magically appears out of nowhere, sailing in on a cloud of angelic fuzz and hum, and holy crap, I can’t stop listening.

[Mikey & The Drags are playing their 7” release show 3/30/13 at Mango’s, along with Psychic Palms, Grandfather Child, Springfield Riots, & A Fistful of Soul.]
(self-released; Mikey & The Drags -- http://www.facebook.com/pages/Mikey-the-Drags/236768409677521; Mikey & The Drags (Twitter) -- https://twitter.com/TheDragzzz; Mikey & The Drags (Bandcamp) -- http://mikeythedrags.bandcamp.com/; Mikey & The Drags (SoundCloud) -- https://soundcloud.com/mikey-20)
BUY ME: Bandcamp

Review by . Review posted Saturday, March 30th, 2013. Filed under Features, Reviews.

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3 Responses to “Mikey & The Drags, “Spill Your Guts”/“Solstice””

  1. SPACE CITY ROCK » Yr. Weekend, Pt. 2: Deftones + Mikey & The Drags + The Handshake + SHFL 10-Year Anniversary + Ragged Hearts + More on March 30th, 2013 at 8:24 pm

    […] But hey, at least now I’ve got the band’s brand-new 7″, “Spill Your Guts”/”Solstice,” to tide me over. It’s freaking great, just classic, retro-yet-clean garage-rock that’s less punk and more straight-up classic pop-rock/power-pop, with an awesome organ sound that makes me think of ? & The Mysterians more than anything else, albeit with the aggro edge of, say, The Sonics. Check out the full review here… […]

  2. SPACE CITY ROCK » Yr. Weekend, Pt. 3: Cancer, It’s Over! + Mikey & The Drags + Black Congress + More on April 7th, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    […] Live I’m sure they’re pretty damn noisy, but their recent 7″ turned out to be an awesomely old-school slab of organ-heavy garage-rock a la ? & The Mysterians, in particular, and it’s a blast to listen to. Organ solos rule, […]

  3. SPACE CITY ROCK » FPSF 2013 Rundown, Pt. 1: Half Moon Run + The Mavericks + TV On The Radio + Of Monsters and Men + Hello Chief + Vintage Trouble + More on July 7th, 2014 at 4:39 pm

    […] & the Drags I reviewed the debut 7" from Mikey & The Drags, "Spill Your Guts"/"Solstice," a few months back, and honestly, I'm still kind of flying, even now. If you're a fan of old-old-old-school […]

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