Peel back the layers of black eyeliner and jagged distortion and heavy metal is just a riff off blues and folk traditions. On their debut album, The Sun Dogs, Seattle’s Rose Windows hone in on this musical intersection. The group pays homage to a very specific moment in music history: the late ’60s and early ’70s, when the past and future collided to form a darker strain of rock and roll.
Chris Cheveyo developed the initial spark that led to Rose Windows, but it came out of frustration more than anything else. Tired of playing around with guitar pedals in a series of post-rock bands, Cheveyo gravitated towards old LPs by the Band and Black Sabbath. He started composing songs on his acoustic guitar in his bedroom, and when he showed these to Seattle singer Rabia Shaheen Qazi, he knew he was on to something. Qazi possesses a voice that’s equally soothing and terrifying, capable of switching moods and textures with ease. With the help of several other local musicians, the duo started fleshing out the songs that would turn into The Sun Dogs. The album was let loose independently last year, but Seattle’s Sub Pop loved it so much they decided to re-release earlier this summer.
Part of what makes Rose Windows so unique is the fact they can conceivably tour with metal and folk acts. Today’s song of the day shows off the latter genre, featuring serpentine lead guitar work from Cheveyo and Qazi’s highly expressive voice. No matter your musical preference, “Wartime Lovers” will make you a believer of Rose Windows by the time its done.