Sound Advice: Keeps with The Yugos and Orchards

Saturday • Southgate House Revival

If you thought “Nashville” and “Stoner Rock”

were the most incongruous words to show up in the same sentence (see my All Them Witches preview from last year’s MidPont Music Festival), replace the latter with “Dream Pop” and prepare to have your mind blown by the two-man-with-help Psychedelic Indie Rock orchestra known as Keeps. 

Gusti Escalante and Robbie Jackson met on their first day at Belmont University in Nashville and forged a friendship over their mutual distaste for the glittery Country veneer of their newly adopted hometown. Within a couple of years, Escalante and Jackson translated their common love of Shoegaze, New Wave and edgy Space Rock (Jesus and Mary Chain, Echo and the Bunnymen, David Bowie) into their own sonic profile, adding an oaken touch of earthy Americana to the recipe and creating a contemplative tumult that suggests a lysergic cocktail hour bartended by My Morning Jacket and Cocteau Twins.

In early 2013, Keeps leaked their aptly titled debut single, the swirling, swaggeringly atmospheric “High,” which was followed later in the fall by an impressive debut EP, Rift. Over the past two and a half years, Keeps has built a solid and loyal fanbase at home and a similarly fervent following on their regional-and-beyond road jaunts, while their lineup shifted from five members to the original two and back to four. (They’re also friends with our own late, lamented Pomegranates, so points for taste.)


Additionally, Keeps has become even more fascinated with jangly ’80s Synth/Guitar Pop (a la XTC), and that direction is evident on “Translucent Girl” and “I Don’t Mind,” the tracks that have been leaked to prime the pump for the March release of Keeps’ inaugural full-length, Brief Spirit.

Tickets/more info here.

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