Introducing | Maui
by Rachel Baker
With a name like Maui you might think this London-based band earns for the tropics of Hawaii, but if their music is any indication this wanting is manifested elsewhere. Next to nothing is known about the band that joined the Internet not even two weeks ago. They’ve given us names, a few faces from photos posted to their Facebook page, and an EP entitled Winter High.
Self-recorded and -released, the EP harkens to the lo-fi/indie rock collective Elephant 6, particularly its noisier bits. Early Neutral Milk Hotel, The Olivia Tremor Control, Beulah, and Modest Mouse vibes weave themselves through the four tracks. Send Me Off For Parts’ vocals are reminiscent of the vocal aesthetic of Will Cullen Hart and Bill Doss of The Olivia Tremor Control and the title track, Winter House, seems to pull inspiration directly from Neutral Milk Hotel’s Song Against Sex, using banter to start off the track, albeit to a lesser effect.
The EP highlights, Slide In and Send Me Off For Parts use Maui’s influences as a baseline rather than a determinate. The former uses lo-fi textures and techniques to create a completely infectious melody and structure. While the intro doesn’t serve much of a purpose and sounds partly like a spaceship lifting off and, morbidly, never landing, the outro is exciting and anticipatory lead by a guitar that develops tremendously. The latter highlight pulls back on the raging guitars and percussion giving way to the psychedelic drawl of the lead vocalist. It’s measured and even haunting.
Winter House is a collection of four songs that show their ability to craft driving indie rock tracks that are able to swell and take over, minus an intro here and there. Maui is a band still in the throes of taking shape and it will be exciting to see what they release next and how they continue to develop their own brand of lo-fi.