Cool American Finds Its Groove in "Maui's"

Cool American Finds Its Groove in Photography by: Claire Gunville

Portland-based four piece Cool American plies a unique trade, somewhere between sneakily virtuosic slacker rock and overdriven power pop-punk in the vein of Tony Molina—an intersection embraced by the group in their cheeky self-identification as "dorito rock." On "Maui's," the latest transmission from Cool American's upcoming full-length Infinite Hiatus, both tendencies shine through, goading each other in a playful back-and-forth.

"Maui's" is a gentle recollection of a Saturday long past, strummed and lovingly recounted until it suddenly veers off course. A "twitch" Nathan Tucker describes becomes a genuine "warning" that the song might swerve out of control. And it does: as the subject tries to "have another drink and ignore" this premonition, this sense of pent-up tension, the song explodes in a wash of guitar pedal dissonance. But the new direction is neither aggressive nor unflattering: the heavier section retains the first's jaunty whimsy—albeit with a little more teeth.

Infinite Hiatus is out June 2 on Good Cheer Records. Listen to the premiere of "Maui's" below and be sure to catch Cool American play with Turtlenecked and Museum of Recycling at Alphaville June 25.

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