I mean, they say fall started on September 23. The dozens and dozens of pumpkin-spiced atrocities have been released (did you know the Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte has its own Twitter? Yeah…), we’ve prepared our closets for the cooler weather, and our crazy roommates (sorry Kat) have started preparing for Halloween, mentally, physically, and emotionally.
So, in reality, it should be fall, right? Let’s all snuggle up in our cozy sweaters by a crackling fire and drink mulled wine and watch football, right!?
Not right. I don’t know about the rest of the country, but the first official week of fall here in Los Angeles has been a total crap-shoot. Temperatures in the high 80’s, appallingly aggressive humidity, haze so heavy it looks like fog, and beaches closed because of safe sex, have most people here wondering, “Will I ever get to wear these flannels I bought for $12 at Costco? (They were almost a better deal than the truck-load of Nutella I found in the back!)”
About the only thing I feel as if I’m totally prepared for so far this fall is fall music. It’s time to relax our eardrums, switch off the synths, and bring the beat down about 100BPM. Time for some fresh and warbling vocals, beats dropped by real drumsets, tried and true basslines accompanied by pianos, and plucky but reliably cool guitar.
A few weeks ago, a chappy young lad named Jack send me an email with some music. That music was an EP titled “Treasures” by his band, Jack and the Kids. I can call him a chappy young lad because he’s from Australia (that’s what they say there, right?). Although at the time I received the email it was still summer, from the first strum of the guitar, the first beat of the snare, and then that first deep, bassy vocal hit, visions of
sugar plums red-yellow-brown leaves, scarves, herringbone, and hot chocolate came to mind. I was hooked. My first comparison was a nod to the vocal quality of Matt Berninger, and lyrics and subtle melancholy that bore a striking similarity to his band, The National. A little further in, you start to feel a little bit more of the transcendent and gently hypnotizing qualities in the fashion of groups like The xx. And when the short but sweet EP is done, you find yourself slowly rocking back into the reality that you’re actually sweating in your work clothes on a 100+ degree train blazing through Downtown Los Angeles. But for a moment, you were elsewhere.
So until fall has spread to the furthest corners and edges of the United States, we at least have the Jack and the Kids “Treasures” EP to tide us over.