It’s not easy to sound this cool. “’Cause I can take you dancing / Use me to feel home,” singer/guitarists Carlotta Cosials and Ana Perrote wail on “Garden,” the opening track on Madrid garage-rockers Hinds’ full-length debut Leave Me Alone. It’s a summery blend of laid-back, unaffected indifference and sweet and jangly intimacy that traces the remainder of the album’s 12 tracks. They nail the chill girl aesthetic and the LP is a self-portrait of a year of love, lust and parties.
The tale begins when the first incarnation of the band now known as Hinds consisted exclusively of Cosials and Perrote under the name Deers, the two who were brought together by their now ex-boyfriends, released a pair of tracks, “Bamboo” and “Trippy Gum” in July 2014. Augmented by the rhythm section of Ade Martin on bass and drummer Amber Grimbergen and a name change to Hinds, the foursome presented another two-song set in late 2014.
Highlighting the period while on the road with notables such as The Libertines, Black Lips and The Vaccines, Leave Me Alone is less an outsiders’ memento but more an invitation to rejoice. Pleasant lo-fi ramblings play as chipper, yet melancholy scenes; hazy and strolling surf rock laps under wistful lines like “And how could I show you without looking freaking mad / that I am not always gonna be around” on “Bamboo.”
The expertly executed juxtaposition between youthful, sun-soaked and idle instrumentation and a meandering lyrical stroll through heartbreak exemplifies the women’s wisdom and insight into their own sonic image. They’ve found their niche and stick to it steadfastly. It’s like sitting in on four friends jamming in the garage on a warm summer day, secrets being shared, insecurities laid out in the open, yet low pressure and giddy; a little sloppy and warmly charming.
From the vintage, beach-y guitar licks and crisp drumming on “Fat Calmed Kiddos” or the sweetly somber “And I Will Send Your Flowers Back,” Hinds create self-contained and self-realized moments appropriate for both the twist and slow dancing.
Hinds make not wanting to be bothered by “all that” effortless. They sonically personify the summer, or rather the waning of summer; a flower wilting, still beautiful but knowing well enough that the end is near. For Hinds, however, the end is far from in sight.
Review by Allie Volpe