14 Songs, 47 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The 11 years between albums were still productive for Beachwood Sparks. After 2002’s Make the Cowboy Robots Cry, its members played with The Tyde, All Night Radio, Mystic Chords of Memory, Frausdots, and Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti. A reunion for Sub Pop’s 20th anniversary brought them back together, and from the warm and twangy opener, it sounds like they never went away. The dusky, backlit haze of “Forget the Song” picks up where 2001’s Once We Were Trees left off. An aptly titled “Sparks Fly Again” finds “Farmer” Dave Scher’s spectral inflections kissing new life into a familiar cosmic American backdrop. Bassist Brent Rademaker takes the mic in “Mollusk,” a loving psychedelic ode to the Venice Beach surf shop that serves as a hub for the wave-riding band. The shimmering “Leave That Light On” sonically approximates a flickering sunset on ocean surf before “Earl Jean” revisits the group's love for post-Parsons Byrds. With guest musicians Neal Casal, Ariel Pink, Darren Rademaker, Jen Cohen, and Jimi Hey, The Tarnished Gold isn’t just a Beachwood Sparks album—it’s a Beachwood Sparks celebration.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The 11 years between albums were still productive for Beachwood Sparks. After 2002’s Make the Cowboy Robots Cry, its members played with The Tyde, All Night Radio, Mystic Chords of Memory, Frausdots, and Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti. A reunion for Sub Pop’s 20th anniversary brought them back together, and from the warm and twangy opener, it sounds like they never went away. The dusky, backlit haze of “Forget the Song” picks up where 2001’s Once We Were Trees left off. An aptly titled “Sparks Fly Again” finds “Farmer” Dave Scher’s spectral inflections kissing new life into a familiar cosmic American backdrop. Bassist Brent Rademaker takes the mic in “Mollusk,” a loving psychedelic ode to the Venice Beach surf shop that serves as a hub for the wave-riding band. The shimmering “Leave That Light On” sonically approximates a flickering sunset on ocean surf before “Earl Jean” revisits the group's love for post-Parsons Byrds. With guest musicians Neal Casal, Ariel Pink, Darren Rademaker, Jen Cohen, and Jimi Hey, The Tarnished Gold isn’t just a Beachwood Sparks album—it’s a Beachwood Sparks celebration.

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4:37
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2:53
3:41
3:08
4:50
4:41
2:04
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4:26
2:05
2:08
3:25

About Beachwood Sparks

Los Angeles-based cosmic country-pop combo Beachwood Sparks were formed in mid-1998 by onetime Strictly Ballroom singer/guitarist Chris Gunst, slide guitarist/keyboardist Dave Scher, ex-Further bassist Brent Rademaker, and Lilys drummer Aaron Sperske. Inspired by the pioneering country-rock efforts of West Coast legends like the Byrds, the Flying Burrito Brothers, and Buffalo Springfield, the group issued acclaimed singles for Bomp! ("Desert Skies") and Sub Pop ("Midsummer Daydream") prior to the spring 2000 release of their superb self-titled debut LP. Their polished sophomore effort, Once We Were Trees, followed in fall 2001. A year later, the band released the EP Make the Cowboy Robots Cry. Around the same time, Beachwood Sparks went on unofficial hiatus, during which time the members pursued various side projects including Rademaker's band the Tyde, which also included Scher and Gunst at times, Scher's All Night Radio, and others. In 2012, Beachwood Sparks reunited for the full-length effort The Tarnished Gold. In 2013, the band's previously unreleased debut album, Desert Skies, from which their initial Bomp! singles were culled, received an official pressing on Alive Naturalsound Records. ~ Jason Ankeny

  • ORIGIN
    Los Angeles, CA
  • FORMED
    1998

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