Ty Segall and White Fence: Hair (Drag City) 

It makes sense that Ty Segall and Tim Presley (aka White Fence) would team up eventually. Both of them traffic in similar styles of fuzzed-out psychedelic garage pop. They're both Californians, springing from an active music scene that seems to encourage ambition. Segall and Presley have, between them, been in a ton of different projects in the past 10 years, cranking out album after album, both as solo artists and with outfits like Epsilons, Party Fowl, Sic Alps, the Perverts, Traditional Fools, Darker My Love and the Nerve Agents. They put Stephin Merritt to shame for sheer output and eclecticism.

Presley's more ethereal take on '60s garage blends well with Segall's slightly scuzzier vibe, and Hair winds up sounding about exactly how you'd imagine a White Fence/Ty Segall collaboration album would sound. "Easy Ryder" is pure Merseybeat pop, with a barely-there riff coasting over a solid drumbeat; it's attitude and mood more than songcraft. That kind of stripped-down swagger could feel undercooked, but with Segall, it never does. He makes this stuff seem downright zen. "I Am Not a Game," the album's lead single, is both zanier and softer-edged, with a Hammond organ spiraling into the song's meaty lead riff.

Ty Segall's upcoming solo album sounds a bit more exciting than what Hair offers—he's bragged that he'll be going for an "evil, evil space rock" sound. But that's not meant to undercut the pure pleasures of Hair.

More by Sean Bottai


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