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Elk City - Strong (You're Not Alone) (Magic Door Records)

26 July 2023

I’ve heard Elk City fire off salvos of immediate and articulate rock, I’ve witnessed them making sophisticated pop music, I’ve listened to them folk out and watched them embrace indie vibes and make them effortlessly their own. On “Strong (You’re Not Alone)”, they head somewhere different again, tumbling down some psychedelic, drifting, dream-pop rabbit holes, probably the same ones that the likes of Jefferson Airplane found themselves falling down, and Grace Slick’s voice is not a bad reference point for Renée LoBue’s vocals here.

It’s a song built on floating 60’s vibes and hippy rock haze, a gentle dream-pop journey where mood and music ebbs and flows, rises and falls: a sonic acid trip for a new generation.

Seven albums in and Elk City are as hard to define as ever, following the music wherever it may take them, and because of this attitude, the ability to pursue creativity to its logical, and perhaps not so logical, conclusion, to be led by its potential rather than force it along pre-determined lines, that they remain one of the most un-second-guess-able bands of the moment.

But that’s okay, who doesn’t like a surprise?

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