Videos by American Songwriter
Perry, Georgia’s dance whiz Washed Out, aka Ernest Greene, has signed to Sub Pop for the release of his debut full-length, Within And Without, this July.
But in October, during Next BIG Nashville, Greene told us he had been working on some acoustic tracks, but he thought it was too much of a departure from the reverb-drenched dance tunes of his EP, Life Of Leisure.
“Over the past couple months, I would sit down every morning without any plan or any sound that I was working toward. I came up with a lot of different stuff that I realized pretty quickly wasn’t Washed Out material. Acoustic-y, bare bones – maybe only an acoustic guitar and a drumbeat, and having the vocals more up front. I was really into ‘70s AM sunshine pop. 12-strings.”
What has emerged from Greene’s Georgia bedroom studio is an evolved version of the same characteristic crunchy dance music that helped spawn chillwave. The first track, “Eyes Be Closed,” is a wash of synths and drum machines with a lovely floating melody, plus Greene’s signature vocal reverb (he swears it’s from an old version of Cubase LE).
During NBN, Greene had some problems with the Cannery Ballroom’s sound and his own laptop-software setup but, he said, he was taking notes on tourmates Yeasayer’s ultra-pro hardware-based live show.
It looks like he’s made some adjustments. You can check out Washed Out’s performance from last weekend’s Sasquatch festival over at NPR.org.
The set opens with a big new dance track of arpeggiating synths that slowly builds into some nice live drum beats and shoegaze-y guitars, before breaking into feel-good Life Of Leisure jam, “New Theory.”