New Orleans indie rockers Biglemoi return this summer with their most well-rounded set of songs to date in the aptly-titled Permanent Vacation, a five-song, twenty two-minute extended play with a distinctly summer feel to its tracklist. Permanent Vacation’s exotic title track, crushing psychedelic rock tune “Decipher” and record-opener “Joyride” are three of the heaviest, and most original, pieces of material that Biglemoi have ever recorded, and though there’s a little more pop polish in this master mix than I was expecting to encounter here, it doesn’t water-down the independent stylization of the music at all whatsoever. If you’ve been waiting for a hot alternative jam to get your season started right, this EP is complete with five worthwhile candidates for your consideration.
“Joyride” and “Sola” feel like vocal showcases to me, designed to show off the versatility of the band’s bilingual lyricism as well as the depth of their poetry in general. No matter what language they’re serenading us in, the verses in these two tracks in particular are wholly expressive, relatable, and devoid of the arrogant attitudes that have become so incomprehensibly commonplace in alternative music these last few years. Biglemoi prove themselves to be quite adept at switching gears in Permanent Vacation, going deep in the colorful ballad “Other Side” whilst touching on existential narratives and dreamy melodies to match in the title track and the harder-edged “Decipher.” There’s something to suit most tastes here, and even at their most experimental, the band never devolves into avant-garde inaccessibility.
“Decipher” and “Sola” have a nice crossover appeal with both pop and rock fans, in part due to their stylish production quality which, from where I sit, makes them the cornerstones of this extended play without debate. Biglemoi have come a long way in the last four years since the release of their self-titled debut, and I think that while they could still grow into their sound a little more than they have, there’s no disputing that this is their most refined and complete group of songs so far. They’re learning to curb the handful of over the top components that hindered them back in 2015 here, and though Permanent Vacation is a step in the right direction for this band, I don’t think that it’s representative of a creative ceiling for their output at all.
Lean, mean, cultured and always endearing, Biglemoi submit their best work yet in this new EP, and having followed the band for the last couple of years, I can assure longtime supporters that they won’t be disappointed in what the group has assembled for us in these five delicious tracks. From the surreal grind of “Joyride” to the pastoral glow of “Other Side,” there isn’t a dull moment to behold in Permanent Vacation, and hopefully the band will follow-up on its release with a full-length tour. This material would probably sound even more evocative when played atop the stage amidst all of the energy that a crowd can produce, but at any rate, I’m all the more curious to see their show in person sometime soon because of this smoldering new record.