Chicago psych-pop outfit YAWN has been recording and releasing music for over five years. On their new EP titled Day Trip, YAWN manages to harness enough good vibes to lay down five, strong, smartly written songs that are equal parts neo-psych, indie rock, and fun sing-along pop.
The vocal harmonizing on “Overflow” is wonderfully punctuated with a slick lead guitar solo and synthesizers. The bouncy title track “Day Trip”, with its cheery handclaps and quirky guitar and bass interplay, sounds and feels like a welcome update on Modest Mouse’s “Float On”. Although it manages to maintain the momentum of the first two tracks, “Only Way” is definitely the most moody offering here, changing YAWN’s sound up a bit with a Middle Eastern-esque flute-like synth solo. The remarkable “Tumbleweed” has a laid-back, tropical feel and somehow manages to feature more instruments in 3:30 than a song twice its length. The record’s final song “Night Vision” falls into a groove that breaks the band’s sound down nicely, showcasing each part for one last time.
In addition to being beautifully produced, Day Trip is thoughtfully sequenced so that each song builds upon the one previous by adding increasingly complex rhythms, immersing the listener in the band’s sound world. With its lightly fuzzed-out lead guitar, polyrhythmic drumming, complex bass work, analog-sounding synths, and vocals reminiscent of Animal Collective and Surfer Blood, YAWN’s Day Trip is a wonderfully sweet late-summer surprise.