This past weekend as the autumn deluge of wet splashed the west coast, I decided to get my “Primp” on and check out the latest effort from Vancouver’s all girl trio, Primp. According to my trusty Webster’s Dictionary, the term “primp” means the following — “to dress, adorn, or arrange in a careful or finicky manner.” The irony here is that this low-fi bedroom project (recorded in Surrey) is clearly un-finicky, raw and quite un-primp like in fact. Afterall, under-produced is the new overproduced.
Their new record Daytona was released July 1, 2021 and the group is supported through Youth Riot Records in Seattle, Washington. Primp is Aly Laube (vocals / guitar) , Tae Whitehouse (drums / vocals) and Kristen Frier (bass / vocals, and apparently, giggles.) Previous releases include 2018’s Half Bloom and Mother Loose from 2019.
This batch begins with the track “You Kiss Boys For Fun” (apparently the band’s ode to spring break shenanigans) / “Yep” and finishes strong with the luscious “Screamy”. The opener, “You Kiss Boys For Fun” is a 45 second, repetitive romp which blends into the more developed, hooky offering “Yep”. “Yep’s” intro kicks off with a killer bass line, and features a retro sweet harmony that jetitsons me to a sort of 80’s Go-Go’s / Bangles vibe — “Yep / Wow / Yep / Uh Huh / Shut me out…” But “Screamy” is easily the most interesting track. The song opens with a dreamy, descending guitar riff accompanied by an almost hypnotic, melodic lead vocal provided by Aly Laube. The verse is reminiscent of a Syd Barrett era Pink Floyd deep cut, that melts over you like a lost weekend involving a rogue magic mushroom mishap. Then, the chorus catapults into a cringe-worthy rock god scream, and degenerates into a much higher pitch yelp that is rather, “Screamy”. All rock vocalists worth their salt, need a kick-ass blood curdling scream in their arsenal — and we have lift off here.
The band has described themselves as, “dreamy garage rock,” “punk” and “power pop.” The key element here appears to be the seemingly unaffected guitar twang. Likely a fun group to witness live, so scan your local listings for future gigs. I’ve always been a sucker for punk-a-licious groups with a quirky edge, since seeing (local 3 chord songsters) the Dishrags back in the day, so Primp now carries that torch loud and proud. In the end, I did manage to get my “Primp” on and quite liked it! Yep, Yep, Yep, Yep… —Todd McCluskie