LUAU made a huge splash on the scene last year, based on their live shows and a double A-side single. They really didn’t need much more than that to leave a huge impression. LUAU is Evan Hallock (vocals/guitar), Eric Thompson (guitar), Jon Collins (bass) and David Hubbard (drums), and they will be a band to watch in 2017. Both “Keep Talking” and “Anchor” are included on this debut EP. The former kicks off the record, and it’s a stunning showcase for Hallock’s vocals. There is a hint of Built to Spill in how his voice feels. Meanwhile, the band creates an amazing array of guitars and propulsive rhythms to provide a perfectly constructed home for the vocals to dwell in.
“Darling” follows up, with vocals that are even more reminiscent of Doug Martsch. By the time “Diffuser” arrives, you are completely consumed. It’s every bit as good as their previous singles and more musically fascinating. It blends seamlessly into “Spin Your Web,” which sits in stark contrast to the rockers found here and slows the momentum. After a minute, it breaks open, but it’s more about the lyrics and ensuring the emotional punch is not lost in the din. “Anchor” is probably their best single to date, a synthesis of everything that is perfect about LUAU. Whether it’s the guitar hooks or Hallock’s best vocals, it simply comes together perfectly. This EP should be sent to every college radio station and alt-rock outlet they can find. Gone finishes with “Soak It In,” which possibly should have been the title of the record, because that’s all I want to do with this thing once it’s finished.