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Alternative & Indie - Released February 15, 2019 | Autumn Tone Records

Los Angeles duo Golden Daze arrived in 2016 on a misty cloud of tape echo and dusty bedroom psychedelia. The project of friends and co-songwriters Ben Schwab and Jacob Loeb, the band's affinity for subtle popcraft was apparent, swathed as it was in dense layers of lo-fi fuzz and late-'60s tonal cues. Three years later, the two return with Simpatico, a gently mesmerizing follow-up whose increased production values help to frame their songs in a more sophisticated, if still hazy light. Unlike many bands with more than one songwriter, Golden Daze unwaveringly present themselves as a single unit, singing together in unison or harmony throughout the entire album and keeping the focus squarely on their collaboration. Since much of the subject matter here seems to be the growing discord within Schwab and Loeb's own friendship, the steadfastness of their unified front presents an interesting dynamic. A stormy, autumnal sadness seems to permeate the entire album -- from the rainy opener, "Blue Bell," on through the lush title cut that closes out the set. The shoegazing feel of their debut is replaced on Simpatico by a greater emphasis on detailed arrangements, its overall tone slightly resembling the Brian Wilson-via-High Llamas school of ornate melancholia. A dreamy, George Harrison-esque slide guitar threads throughout highlights like the excellent "Took a Fall" and "Sentimental Mind," two exquisite indie pop gems that represent the significant amount of growth Golden Daze have achieved here. Having completed this strong outing amid the apparent turmoil of their own creative partnership, the question remains, will the band survive for a third outing? ~ Timothy Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released February 19, 2016 | Autumn Tone Records

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Underneath the gauzy, lo-fi patina of their self-titled debut, California's Golden Daze have buried some richly realized pop songs. Late-'60s enthusiasts Ben Schwab and Jacob Loeb approach their brand of textured pop in a manner similar to Anton Newcombe, whose long-running psych-revival outfit Brian Jonestown Massacre is another acknowledged influence. While droning shoegaze ambience and shimmering effects help to weave these 11 songs together, the core of Golden Daze's sound is much more focused than its dreamy first impressions might indicate. The spirited midtempo rocker "Low" is an early highlight, with some nifty hooks and a soaring chorus plowing through its acres of reverb. "Foreigner" is another standout whose clever chord structure builds around a beguiling little vocal motif that serves as its chorus. Along with the exultant thump of "Sleepin' in the Sun," it's also among the catchiest tracks on the album. Golden Daze also prove they have a way with more subtle fare on "Wildcard," a brainy bit of laid-back pop with a nicely subdued groove that sets up the celestial and quietly massive "Still Time" which closes out the album. At times, the effects feel like a third bandmember as Schwab and Loeb dial up the tape echo on their vocal tracks to create new rhythms, or launch a dense cloud of manipulated guitar signal that hovers like a thunderstorm. Fans of Amen Dunes and earlier Tame Impala will likely find Golden Daze on their radar, but even those who don't quite go for psych or dream pop will recognize the solid pop songcraft on this well-made debut. ~ Timothy Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 25, 2019 | Autumn Tone Records

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Alternative & Indie - Released February 19, 2016 | Autumn Tone Records

Underneath the gauzy, lo-fi patina of their self-titled debut, California's Golden Daze have buried some richly realized pop songs. Late-'60s enthusiasts Ben Schwab and Jacob Loeb approach their brand of textured pop in a manner similar to Anton Newcombe, whose long-running psych-revival outfit Brian Jonestown Massacre is another acknowledged influence. While droning shoegaze ambience and shimmering effects help to weave these 11 songs together, the core of Golden Daze's sound is much more focused than its dreamy first impressions might indicate. The spirited midtempo rocker "Low" is an early highlight, with some nifty hooks and a soaring chorus plowing through its acres of reverb. "Foreigner" is another standout whose clever chord structure builds around a beguiling little vocal motif that serves as its chorus. Along with the exultant thump of "Sleepin' in the Sun," it's also among the catchiest tracks on the album. Golden Daze also prove they have a way with more subtle fare on "Wildcard," a brainy bit of laid-back pop with a nicely subdued groove that sets up the celestial and quietly massive "Still Time" which closes out the album. At times, the effects feel like a third bandmember as Schwab and Loeb dial up the tape echo on their vocal tracks to create new rhythms, or launch a dense cloud of manipulated guitar signal that hovers like a thunderstorm. Fans of Amen Dunes and earlier Tame Impala will likely find Golden Daze on their radar, but even those who don't quite go for psych or dream pop will recognize the solid pop songcraft on this well-made debut. ~ Timothy Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 16, 2018 | Autumn Tone Records

Alternative & Indie - Released December 1, 2015 | Autumn Tone Records

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