Unlearn, Fergus And Geronimo’s debut full-length on the Seattle-based Sub Pop spin off Hardly Art, doesn’t run as a particularly cohesive record. Instead it skips like an excited young band stretching its muscles, still deciding which direction will make their dreams come true. Some of its tracks are British invasion riff heavy with a little rhythm and blues, some get the organ tuned up and others dabble in jam band zone. Most, however, have enough kick to be singles with memorable choruses, retro sing-a-long sort of melodies, and plenty of energy. Unlearn’s first official single, the mid-tempo cut “Powerful Lovin’,” is a particular stand out. Clever lyrics about the tripwires of love carried along by that early ’70s neutered rock soul a la Paul McCartney with singer Andrew Savage tearing out the vocals.
Fergus And Geronimo is a transplant group from Denton, Texas, recently relocating to join the musical ranks in New York’s most populous borough, Brooklyn. The move not only gave the duo a change of scenery but also scored them a new guitarist and drummer, as well as a live female back up vocalist. The band that got its start as a side project between two friends, Savage and Jason Kelly, met when Kelly was mixing a record for the Texas-based band Teenage Cool Kids, and the Texas grown jangle pop spread across state lines and soon it was clear the side project needed a little extension. Having developed feelers on both ends, the partnership’s combined strengths via production chops and band practice really lend to the record’s debut maturity.