By Shane Willenborg
Local Music Journalist
Artist: Bones Garage
Album:Oi Ma Yeah
Release Date: March 29, 2019
I was lucky enough to receive an early review copy of Oi Ma Yeah, the sophomore release from Bones Garage, from the generous people at Austin Town Hall Records. While I hadn’t heard of the group before, their music felt familiar, like a band I’ve always heard, but never knew the name of. I found myself recalling old memories and dreaming of getting out of the cold, dreary late winter weather we are currently experiencing. I hope that Oi Ma Yeah is going to be gracing a lot of playlists this summer, reminding people what the summer sounds like.
Starting off the album, “Great Rift Valley” is one of those songs that makes you nostalgic for the summers of years past. The song’s bright and slinky guitar paired with the back-up singers chanting the title of the album churns up memories of spending my summers free of responsibility with my friends. The song builds on it’s psychedelic rock roots with cascading piano riffs and reverberated guitar solos. I ended up listening to this song on repeat a half dozen times when I first heard this album, because it makes you just want to dance.
Up next, “Toptlopompo” continues with the bright and energetic tone of the first song. The quirky vocals seem to stretch and fold over the music in a way that reminds me of The Sugarcubes. This is offset by the third song on the album, “Back to the Ape,” a melancholy ballad about the nature of human behavior and how how we perpetually waste our gift of intelligence. If the first two songs on the album curate feelings of summer days, “Back to the Ape” reminds me of warm summer nights at the pool.
The brief respite from ”Back to the Ape” is immediately interrupted by the wailing guitars and droning lyrics of “What was the Question.” This in your face power ballad is followed by “Third World Country,” returning to the melancholic and dreamy sound of the first two songs.
“I Have to Apologize” and “Farhud” both provide that same summer inspired sound, but the song “Grenades” really stands out to me. With it’s light and airy guitar riffs, this bossa nova esque tune leaves me thinking of relaxing days at the beach during spring break.
Where this album really shines once again is during the tenth song “Homo Sapiens Love.” I’m once again reminded of late summer nights where my friends and I would float in the public pool by my house and hope that maybe this time summer wouldn’t end. The song relies on long and heavily reverberated guitar and synthesizer chords to convey the feeling of floating away.
This is easily going to be a regular album for me this summer, and is already one of my favorite releases of 2019. Bones Garage is going to be a band to watch this year, with a worldwide tour and an appearance at SXSW this March. Oi Ma Yeah is an easy recommendation for me to make for anyone going on a road trip this summer or just laying around the pool between semesters.