Best friends, Mark Lentz and Lauren E. Walker, make whimsically freakish lo-fi pop through their project Nice Legs. Exposure to South Korean psych-pop was proven to be transformative when the Little Rock, Arkansas natives packed their bags for Seoul almost five years ago. Under their respective monikers, Henry Demos and Lewtrakimou, Lentz and Walker each make their own quirky bedroom nuggets on their split album I Was Trying To Get There But It Was Hard To See From The Balloon (via Fox Food Records). More of a compilation than an album, its a collection of song ideas and droplets the two have been kicking around.
Henry Demos fills up the A-Side while Lewtrakimou takes up the B-Side. On the opener, “Electric Duck” Demos goes on a bouncy psych-freakout with wobbly vocals akin to Wayne Coyne. Bursting with euphoria, its one of the more fleshed out songs on the album. Demos embraces the weirdo aesthetics of folk on tracks like dissonant “Forget It” and the echo-laced “Worried,” both having a warped and freestyle feel. “Make A Beard” is filled with cheery finger-picking accompanied by muted but jittery percussions. To close out Side A, the mystifying “Starve” is propelled by a wispy haunting riff that flirts with wooly downbeat percussions.
On Side B, Lewtrakimou is much quieter than her musical collaborator, but a bit more adventurous. Leaning towards the more abstract than conventional songwriting, Lewtrakimou‘s side is a gold mine of experimental motifs and rough song ideas. Most of the tracks are no longer than a minute long, making for easy listening like the miniature kraut-rock track “Casserole” and the wonky but catchy demo “Holy Toledo.”
Buried underneath all of the layers of reverb and rough-around-the-edges instrumentation, at its core, I Was Trying…From The Balloon is a pop record, that is an extremely rewarding listen when given multiple play-throughs