White Denim | Fits
Most Likely To: fit (or not) in fits and starts.
Fits is a simple word with a double meaning. It is also the title of White Denim’s second full-length release. White Denim’s music contains both senses of the word, whether “fit” describes a temporal lobe seizure or the way that melody and rhythm just click. The high-energy Austin-based trio is led by singer/guitarist James Petralli, backed by the rhythm section of Joshua Block and Steve Terebecki.
Unlike their debut, Exposion, which was a digital only download, White Denim offers Fits for sale as a double disc (which includes a copy of Exposion), as well as a vinyl and an MP3 version. Packaging differences aside, there are substantive differences, too. Fits widens White Denim’s range of influences, as the band sounds like they recorded the record after listening to Band of Gypsies and Abandoned Luncheonette ad nauseum.
Exposion’s relentless simplicity was endearing, but Petralli and company made a point on Fits of integrating psychedelia and blue-eyed soul into their musical pastiche. As a result, Fits has a broader sound, which succeeds about half the time. Standout track “I Start to Run” was recorded with effortless clarity, so you can hear every note of the larger-than-life bass line and gravely vocals. “All Consolation” pairs a phenomenal fuzzed out guitar solo with a chorus of backing vox that go straight to hell. “Say What You Want” stacks hypnotic guitar on top of Hammond organ while “Everybody Somebody” bumps, grinds, slaps, and claps it’s way to funky salvation.
The not-so-good songs, such as the limp “Regina Holding Hands” with its forced falsetto vocals and the inexplicable titled “Syncn” were graciously placed at the end of the record. But even these imperfections have a place because if White Denim hadn’t taken on a bit more than they could handle on their sophomore release, they might not have been able to figure out just what fits.