About fourteen-seconds into “Joyride,” the punky opening salvo of Biglemoi’s brand new extended play Permanent Vacation, a nervous beat is joined by an airy lead vocal that provides us a little bit of light in the dark sonic tunnel that the band has us traveling down. It isn’t long before smoking riffage comes cascading from the skies above and pulls us into a vortex of rhythm that will swing as hard as a rollercoaster would before releasing us to the reflective calm of “Sola.” At this point, the fast-paced energy evaporates instantly, and in its place there is only a piano’s mournful melody. A gorgeous Spanish serenade penetrates the mix soon after, and it immediately becomes obvious to all who are listening thatPermanent Vacation isn’t your average indie rock EP.
“Sola” is a patient ballad, unraveling little by little until it finally blossoms into a full-blown psychedelic rock jam. We’re adrift in outer space with Biglemoi here, looking down at a big blue earth with wide-eyes, feeling the mortality that the melodies are contemplating so plaintively, but it’s all just a primer for what’s about to come creeping out of the shadows in Permanent Vacation’s namesake song. At first, it’s difficult to tell where “Sola” ends and this title track begins, but as the worldly beat finds its footing against the backdrop of a surreal, almost countrified harmony, we start to figure out where we’re at in the record. All of these songs feature such a smooth segue that, under certain circumstances or illicit substances, one could probably be fooled into thinking that this was recorded in-concert instead of within the four walls of a recording studio.
Biglemoi fires up some more agility for the garage rocking “Decipher,” which saves Permanent Vacation from becoming a total exhibition in experimental ideas. This is, without a question, my favorite song from the EP – it’s a little bit of shoegaze with a lot of post-punk bombast, and in a lot of ways it sums up the personality of the band (at least in this chapter of their rock n’ roll campaign together). It sets us up for the meditative conclusion in “Other Side” like no other song could have, but I can also see why Biglemoi selected it as one of this record’s two singles, the other being “Joyride,” as it stands on its own just fine as well.
“Other Side” definitely finishes us off with all the sonic fireworks that fans of this group have come to demand from a Biglemoi EP, and though it took me a couple of listens to come around on its spacey style, it’s actually become my second favorite track from this record after “Decipher.” Permanent Vacation doesn’t change the world of pop music as we know it, and I doubt that it’s going to be the release to break Biglemoi into the mainstream, but make no mistake about it – this extended play is on par with some of the best records to make headlines in 2019, and I have a strong feeling that it’s just a hint of what they’ve got planned for us next.