by Shruti Pal
Philadelphia’s Vacationer returns with their latest LP, Mindset, a perfect record for your summer soundtrack for road trips, rooftop bars, and picnics all around the country.
It’s been four years since their last release, but the Philly six-piece delivers a set that does justice to their signature psychedelic grooves.
The album’s clean production creates a dream-pop vibe that you can easily listen to — you can just close your eyes and get lost in the music. The starts and stops and interesting arrangements keep you engaged (think Washed Out and Tame Impala had a baby and it’s all grown up now). No matter the style of the grooves, the songs are always pulled together by catchy vocal melodies.
How does a song imitate a painting? The eclectic rhythms, ranging from the funk of “Magnetism” to the 90s hip-hop-esque drums and bass pairing on “Being Here”, are beautifully complemented by tasteful instrument samples. They are intricately overlayed and often fleshed out with vocal harmonies to truly achieve that dreamy punch.
This is particularly exemplified on the track “Turning”, where the punchy groove, funky bass, violin samples, piano samples, vocal harmonies and steely electric guitar riffing comes together to produce a clever and transporting indie tune. The choir-like vocal call and response on “Strawberry Blonde” perfectly slices through its syncopated light-touch drums.
The musical intelligence of this album deserves accolade – the catchiness of its songs is often rooted in the complex layering, as opposed to the repetition and simplicity we saw in their previous record.
They have returned to a sound closer to what we found in their debut album, Gone. Mindset is undoubtedly a step in the right direction for the band. Vacationer fans everywhere are thrilled and new listeners are slowly being alerted of a new band to put on their radar.
Find more information and listen to Mindset below.