Los Angeles-based garage rock band The Gooms came out with their first full length album this month. This five piece band has been keeping listeners eagerly waiting for this release, teasing fans with singles over the past year. Their last EP release With an M definitely leaned a little more towards a traditional surf punk sound, but this project shows a diverse array of influences and styles with elements of surf, punk, jazz and noise rock scattered throughout the eclectic tracklist.
The opening track “God’s Target” is their most listened to song on Spotify to date–and for good reason. It has that classic garage rock sound, a little imperfect but really well done. Lead singer Chase Klitzner’s vocals soar over the dirty instrumentation that The Gooms have become known for. Another similar song on the album is one of my personal favorites, “Ska Ska Blah Blah,” which also came out earlier this year. There are some ska influences that we don’t really hear too much of anymore–the heavy drums in the bridge excite me for more of this sound in the future. The song makes me want to bop around in a mosh pit when that’s finally safe to do again.
Another theme in this album are tracks that are more in the standard indie rock ‘sing-song’-y style like “T.M.P” and “I’m Judy Garland.” These tracks are a nice breather in between the fast paced surf punk songs, and “I’m Judy Garland” is tied for my favorite song off the entire album. It’s so catchy and objectively good. Klitzner’s vocals are really well featured in the mix and the track focuses on the lyrics that flow really nicely.
Something I didn’t expect from The Gooms is this sense of humor within some of the tracks that are a little more experimental like “Free Sweaters? Fantastic!” and “Unoriginal Boy.” The focus is on the lyrics in these songs and I can’t get enough of it. My other favorite song off the album fits this comedic theme: “LA, Cowboy.” The lyrics “I like you and I don’t like people” absolutely kills me, and these witty tracks are super funky with a nice groove.
Overall, this album shows off how dynamic and talented this band is and it proves that they cannot be pigeon-holed into any one particular style, which I really appreciate. The only band I can kind of compare to The Gooms would be Grouplove, because The Gooms are so easy to listen to and all of their songs have this great groove that ties all of the different styles together, not to mention the incredible lyrics on this album. Laugh. is a great example of what The Gooms are capable of creating.
Listen to Laugh. here: