While some bands’ inability to pin down their influences and genre may be a bit of an issue that keeps fans and execs at arm’s length, Oakland, CA-based indie rock band Winchester Revival (WinRev for short) thrives on it — and supporters and critics do, too. Their self-confessed set of inspirational devices includes post-punk, LA ’70s pop, and even shoegazing. However, they assert, the result is wholly accessible, and, admittedly, damn catchy, too.
Their newest effort, Burden’s Landing, is a six-song EP showcasing that very versatility, contains not a bad track. (Find a handful of indie bands that can make that claim.) Lead single “Last Night in Tokyo” is a mellow groove that sounds the way a midnight drive on an abandoned freeway feels: mysterious, exciting, and slightly dangerous. Other standouts are “Diligence,” a smorgasboard of electronic effects incorporated creatively to elevate traditional rock and the straight-up adrenaline rush that is “Ice Water.” (Notable mention is the sleeper “Keep It Together,” a largely instrumental track that’s like sorbet, cleansing the listener’s palate between the first and second halves of the EP.)
Analyzing the overall outcome, it’s easy to see how WinRev grew out of a simple guitar, bass, drums trio to an electronic combo with lush synths and vocals. It’s also easy to see why; sure, they’re capitalizing on a field perpetuated by hipster darlings-turned-mainstream who’s who Arcade Fire, but what’s wrong with that? Nothing when you’re making a sound that’s uniquely yours. And Winchester Revival is certainly doing just that.[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/playlists/47434776″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]