The Key Studio Sessions: Get to know the abrasive side of Soars
The label “dream pop” came up repeatedly last fall when Lehigh Valley four-piece Soars dropped its self-titled debut on La Societe Expeditionnaire (a small but thriving label based in the Poconos). As I watched the band load in for its Key Studio Session, I knew there was more to the story than that. It might have been the huge amps and well-worn pedal boards. It might have been guitarist David Kresge’s Throbbing Gristle shirt. As Soars started playing, my suspicions were confirmed. “Figurehead” opened with a metallic, reverberating howl of synthesizer noise before pushing forward to a racing pulse and Chris Giordani’s squirming, nervous vocals. This song, I decided, was haunted. Seeing Soars performed brings out its more abrasive, experimental side more than we get from the gauzy ambience of the album—and it’s all the more compelling for it. After a short, tight set, the band and I retired to a smaller studio across the hall to talk about the drawbacks of pigeonholing, the thriving but largely hush-hush DIY scene in the Lehigh Valley, and frigid attempts at recording in a warehouse in the dead of winter. You can hear our conversation on Y-Rock on XPN this Friday, March 18, at 3 p.m. when Soars is featured as our Friday afternoon session. Then on Monday, Soars performs with an equally haunted band: Michigan witch house act Salem. Soars performs with Salem at 8 p.m. at Johnny Brenda’s; tickets to the 21+ show are $12.