White Hills – Walks for Motorists
The eighth studio album from an underground psych-rock band doesn’t sound like the most approachable prospect on paper, but Walks for Motorists surprises by being a playful, inviting record that (its title is the first clue) doesn’t take itself too seriously. More interested in churning out grooves than contriving a specific persona or message, White Hills incorporate disparate styles and instruments with an open mind.
The result is a collection of compulsive head-nodders that keep listeners guessing despite their cyclical patterns and limited melodic palette. “We are what you see,” Dave W sings before the band gear up for two minutes of wah pedal flame-throwing, but just when you’ve got them clocked as a more technically proficient simulacra of early Stooges, they dive cheekily into Automated City, a drum machine-lead homage to Kraftwerk with wryly robotic one-note guitar parts and plenty of oscillator twiddling. Equal parts bracing and whimsical, Motorists is just plain fun.