Wondrous Bughouse

Youth Lagoon

Wondrous Bughouse

In 2011, Youth Lagoon's Year of Hibernation hit the ether; it was called a "bedroom recording," but the set by Boise, Idaho's Trevor Powers felt like much more. Eerily intangible but melodic, elusive but memorable, Hibernation mesmerized fans and critics alike. Powers continues in the same vein with Wondrous Bughouse, which somehow feels as amorphous as Year of Hibernation yearned to be under its pesky melodies and song structures. Outnumbering the shapeless bad-trip excursions ("Daisyphobia," "Through Mind and Back") are numerous actual songs, like the lovely "Mute," with Smith's warbly voice reaching through white noise and gurgling keyboard haze, a churning rhythm section, and simple, searching guitar. "Pelican Man" has a Beatles-on-acid vibe that tumbles and glows under a blanket of scratchy reverb, and "Attic Doctor" is a woozy, calliope-soundtracked dream. "Third Dystopia" and "Dropla" build slowly and majestically, with delay and effects pedals running synths and guitars through a time machine that confounds the laws of aural physics. Wondrous is produced by Ben Allen (Washed Out, Deerhunter).

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