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iTunes Editors’ Notes

Wooden Shjips, a San Francisco band known for working rhythmic loops into hypnotic, eight- or ten-minute jams that take off and land like the briefest of chemically induced trips, puts a unique twist on the Spacemen 3/Galaxie 500 drone: they dip into the toolbox of darker, grittier bands, like the Stooges, or an inchoate Velvet Underground, grinding out a smooth, yet slightly menacing edge, polishing it with an unwavering, motorik drum-and-bass groove. This, their second full-length studio release, finds the band smoothly cruising a Day-Glo autobahn, keenly focused on the curves in the road and rarely detouring for guitar freakouts or other deviations. Hard to imagine that a stretch like “Down By the Sea” can hold the tension (and our attention) throughout its eleven-minute wind-up, but it does, superbly, and the band’s foray into something resembling trance-pop on the equally lengthy “Fallin” is brilliant, all cartwheeling Farfisa tones and timid, twinkling guitar spirals. It’s always a revelation to hear such fresh takes on decades-old rock formulas.

Customer Reviews

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this ones a face melter..

Great Summer album.

I didn't like this at first. I thought it sounded too much like Neu! jamming with Spaceman 3 (Fallin' would fit perfectly on the latter half of Neu! '75). But after a few spins it's growing on me. Wooden Shjips definitely has their predecessors, but there is this carefree attitude all over Dos that gives it a unique sound. Check it out if you like any droney psych.

I was reminded of the Doors

I was reminded of the Doors. Repetitive, sure. But a quality that was soothing in a way.

Biography

Formed: 2003 in San Francisco, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

San Francisco's enigmatically named Wooden Shjips play a minimal, droning brand of garage-styled psychedelia with a noticeable '60s Krautrock influence. The band's vocals slip beneath waves of throbbing minimal rhythms, while fuzztone guitar and shrieking organs jump to the foreground. When bandleader Ripley Johnson assembled the group in 2003, he wasn't interested in playing gigs or becoming famous; rather, his original intention was to find a group of non-musicians for the purposes of creating...
Full Bio