Monday, October 20, 2014
Tuesday, October 07, 2014
The EP naturally starts with its namesake Verdugo Park, a happy tune about a happy place where life can't be that hard. Hell, the tune prominently features a tuba and Brandon's own kids. I dare you not to smile while listening to it. Musically, it's what you might expect and would want to hear from Brandon after 2011's excellent change-of-pace 13 Satellites. Forgive the lazy Beatles reference, but consider Verdugo Park Brandon's pre-Sgt. Pepper release; a striking yet fleeting hint of the brilliant promise of what's next. It's a full-on embrace of studio magic, and Brandon has become quite the magician. Hell, I can't even see the green screen in the accompanying magical video ...
Magic. Following the title track is the trippy instrumental Lapiz Lazuli. To carry the Beatles comparison further, it's the Lennon after the McCartney. It's impossible not to hear the mid-60s influence of Tomorrow Never Knows, but it's not merely a copy; it's a Schottsian original. You can picture Brandon working meticulously on this one in the wee hours of a Sunday morning drinking a Scotch while hoping not to wake the kids. My only criticism is that it's not five minutes longer.
Finally, the EP finishes with a perfectly pleasant cover of Castaway. It's an appropriate balance to the rest of the EP and reminds you of earlier, simpler Schott that is more stripped and less studio. Remarkably, in a mere six minutes on a single EP, Brandon Schott has showcased his best qualities. If the intent was to get us pumped for a full-length, well dammit, it's a job well done.
Disclosure: We at Too Poppy consider Brandon a good friend. In other words, he can do no wrong. Of course, a thorough listen to his catalog reveals the truth behind our opinion. Go on. Discover and explore already.
Verdugo Park is out today digitally and available very soon physically!
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