Is this the best looking 45, or just the best 45 this year? Readers of Record Turnover will be well familiar with American 12-string pluckers The Belltowers, after releasing one brilliant EP a few years ago. Here they are now, finally, with their first record to their name and a full LP in the making. Two incredibly strong originals here, hard to believe they’re not covers actually. “No Matter” starts off with fuzz topped by a 12-string riff, like all those Byrds-wannabe tunes (cf. Dennis & the Times “Just If She’s There). Except this is so close to the real deal it’s creepy. It moves between major and minor with remarkable sublety and dives into a phasing-equipped psych out for the last 30 seconds. “She’s Gone” is a classic moody folk-rocker, that would make even The Higher State proud, with a solo full of overdrive. Song-writer Paul Mutchler has penned a proper double-sider here, get it from Hidden Volume now.
Hidden Volume is definitely a new label to watch. Apart from The Belltowers, they’ve also put out a 45 by The Ar-Kaics who are one of the hottest garage outfits right now. You might remember our post about their very first 45 a few years ago. This year they’ve have been busy, and you can read my review of their debut LP on Windian soon. This spring they have put out 45s on Windian, Steady Sounds and as mentioned “Sick & Tired” on Hidden Volume. This tough 45 still features their original, no-bass line up. Hear it here.