We Thought It Was Okay At The Time is a compilation of singles released from 2013-15 by the band Lost Tapes. In a compilation that consists of a few years of material, the various periods of development are easily detectable, but We Thought It Was Okay At The Time is consistent. These two artists from Spain have remained dedicated to their choice of soundscapes and musical elements, allowing for this compilation to have the sound and feel of a single-session album. The singles collected in this release have a blend of the dreamy-shoegaze jangle-pop style the band has been perfecting since their inception in 2012, but at the same time it does not create a mundane stream of monotony one could expect with this mixture of genres with such tight criteria.
“All I Miss” is a fuzzy icicle-pop song that is slightly droned out. The vocal melody captures a classic twee-pop love-drenched sound, similar to Glo-Worm. “Rubber Bracelet” gives off an early 90’s vibe. Assuming they don’t use a Casio, it has that bent Casio-tone sound all too familiar in music of this style. “Chances” is a softer dream-pop track. It sounds like the earlier essences of Wild Nothing recordings, where they captured a dreamy sound without creating too much dissonance between the normal experimental musical soundscapes of the genre.
“Moments are Moments” carries on the dreamy twee-pop sound of the album, but includes some female vocals, and it balances out the vibe of the track unlike the rest. The overall tone of the song is more partial to shoegaze than twee. It is a little more complex with some discord and drawn out melodies. “Come With Me” is the most interesting track on the album. It has a more psychedelic vibe to it: all of the elements within it are adequately drenched in reverb to create a unique soundscape, and is overall a dreamy hymnal. The instruments and vocals blend in such a way that the slow groove, beat, its entrancing vocals, and the backing of the proper pitches that create layers of phantom instruments.
Reverb, psychedelia, dream-pop, and shoegaze: We Thought It Was Okay At The Time is a testament to the duo’s defined sound. Three years of singles, and yet the compilation flows together without flaw. Each track has its own breath of artistic intricacies, providing a storybook of singles without grammatical error or dry tone. Their Bandcamp page attributes the tag “c86” to their music, referring to the NME compilation of indie jangle-pop, C86, released in 1986. We Thought It Was Okay At The Time is Lost Tapes’ personal C86. Although only consisting of one band, and released three decades later, this compilation creates an essence comparable to that of C86.