Taking one part psychedelia and another part post-punk irreverence as imagined through the lens of a post-Seattle sound world, The Lulls submit to the pop music spectrum what could arguably be the most evocative rock song of 2018 in their new single “Not Bad,” which is available everywhere indie music is sold this summer. While I wasn’t familiar with The Lulls’ work prior to hearing this song, I’ve since become a pretty big fan of the framework that they use when it comes to composing and recording as it’s highlighted here. While it doesn’t happen every day, once in a while an artist or a band comes around that has the potential to really change the narrative of their entire scene. The Lulls are one of those bands.
I can’t be completely certain how many hours it took of studio time for The Lulls to hammer out “Not Bad,” but from what I gather in listening to this track a few times through my gut tells me that a lot of time and energy was spent in getting everything about the final mix of this song perfect. The production quality is simply unparalleled in indie rock or anywhere else at the moment, and the band doesn’t sound like multiple musicians playing the same material but more like a singular sonic force to be reckoned with that cannot be stopped or slowed down once it gets going. The Lulls are completely comfortable together and play off of each other’s cues as if they were siblings; a band which isn’t that dissimilar from the one that collaborating artists eventually develop when the chemistry is right.
The Lulls are a larger than life band, and “Not Bad” is a larger than life song, but it never gets to the point of being overindulgent, even for a second. Overindulgence is a problem that has plagued rock bands since time and memorial, and while “Not Bad” is as opulent and well-appointed as they come, it’s still quite a simple song when we strip away the amplifiers and look at this band for the collection of spirited artists that they are. Their combination of styles presented to us in this song make for the best pairing since ham and cheese, and while some may try to replicate what it is they’ve discovered, no one is going to ever do it quite like they do.
I’d really like to see The Lulls live at some point in the near future. “Not Bad” is an absolutely awesome studio track, but a band as in-depth and articulate at merging harmony with discord really belongs on a stage somewhere cutting loose with absolutely nothing to separate them from their audience. If their music continues to build as much momentum moving ahead as it has in the last few months, a subsequent nationwide tour is almost sure to ride in the wake of this single’s success and provide fans from coast to coast with the opportunity to get to know this band a little better. I plan on being among them, and if you’re smart, you will be too.