Photo by Isaac Sterling
Mild High Club gives off a subtly pungent odor, wafting in from some L.A. studio rat’s ’70s fever dream. It takes some serious skill to play music this smooth, and the band has the Steely Dan handbook down both in its smirking name and pedigree. Club founder Alexander Brettin majored in jazz studies before moving from Chicago to L.A.–could music like this be played anywhere else except in the contradiction-heavy City of Angels?–and complex chords cloud the deceptively simple songs.
On its second album, Skiptracing, Mild High Club takes Mac DeMarco’s late-night R&B palette and gently pushes things in more psychedelic directions. It’s out via venerated hip-hop label Stones Throw, practically begging to be chopped up and sampled into oblivion. On its own though, the record is a charming, late-summer listen. The title track has a bit of Beach Boys sunniness in its harmonies, perfectly happy to chill in its own atmosphere. When that slide guitar solo surfs in, you’ll be smiling too.
“Skiptracing” appears on Skiptracing, out now via Stones Throw. Mild High Club plays live in KUTX’s Studio 1A at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, September 6 and later that night at the Mohawk.
–Art Levy // host, Sundays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., producer, My KUTX