Single Review: Cumbres Carrascosa - "Nevertheless Introductory"

Cumbres Carrascosa - Nevertheless Introductory
(Beko Disques 2014)

Nevertheless Introductory is the debut digital single by Cumbres Carrascosa, solo project of Canary Islands-based songwriter Miguel Camara, and was recently released via Beko Disques, a French label that celebrates shoegaze. Despite the highly international nature of this single, it's able to hit surprisingly close to home for me with the inclusion of a cover of Sub Society's "A Lot Less". It's likely you haven't heard of this track, which is because it's a cut that will only be recognized by those who have religiously reviewed "Hokus Pokus", the skate video released in 1989 by board company H-Street. Though the tape isn't by any means a household name, it to this day maintains a cult following, and those who hear the song will instantly be reminded of Matt Hensley's part in the video. Like many bands featured on "Hokus Pokus", Sub Society embodies the ethic of the late 80s SoCal DIY scene: fuzzed-out punk that resembles a twangier Descendents. "A Lot Less" is carried by its murky bass-line and a repetitive three chord progression. It's a bit sloppy, but tough to get out of your head. The Cumbres Carrascosa version of the track is a major departure from the original; it's driven by airy synths and a plodding drum machine, yet it holds firm to Sub Society's minimalist approach to pop. The a-side, "Warm", borrows its sound from both post-punk and new-wave, dark monotone vocals against swirling synths and warbling guitar riffs. It could be mistaken for an early 4AD or Factory records 7". Even if you're not a fan of late-80's skate culture, I think you'll still dig this single, given you're a fan of the KVB, Zola Jesus or Lust For Youth.