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The rulebook written by bands such as Dinosaur Jr. and Pavement has been well read and referenced by many since the 90’s, but TONER are by far one of the most studious and devoted pupils to the school of fuzz academia. A solo project formed by Samuel Cruz, drummer to the monstrous Happy Diving, TONER revels in the granularity of lackadaisical riffing through amps on the verge of combustion, and heady lyrics that read like the description of a daydream.
New single ‘Tar’ sits thoroughly within the dream space, cocooning a cauldron of intense and comforting emotion that exalts the song to a heightened level of cumulative gratification. Sounding distant and dilapidated, the instrumentals whirl in a magnetic fashion, drawing you in closer and closer as you try to decipher the clandestine melodies hidden beneath the song’s cacophony. As an anchor point to the chaos, Cruz’s vocals illuminate like the intermittent beams of a lighthouse in the dead of night, gently reassuring you as the song gradually moves closer to its terminus.
The lo-fi production of ‘Tar’ may feel like a world away from the hi-fi standards that music has moved on to in recent years, but just like an old photograph found in a family album forgotten about for decades, it’s the feeling that the artefact gives which matters, and TONER’s catharsis comes in bucketloads.
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