Sheverb - She Rides Again

Sheverb - She Rides Again

Sheverb noticeably have one of the surf community's favorite words portmanteau'd into their name, they've played surf shows like Austin's Surf By Surf East, and surf fans love 'em -- at a previous SG101 convention I remember hearing several people rave about catching them a few days before. But they've always been more of a spaghetti western band, which again has never stopped twang-loving surf fans, but I think it's best to set expectations: there's not much surf here. On She Rides Again, Sheverb have leaned into psychedelic effects, hypnotic rhythms, and desert-rock riffs. And it's a smokin' meteor of a record.

There are albums that feel just right for the right circumstances, and then there are ones that make their own circumstances. I first listened to this record walking around the streets and subways of New York City, not exactly an uninhabited desertscape of wide-open sky, and found myself grabbed by it. One flaw of spaghetti western soundtracks is that they're sequenced to match a movie. You tend to start off strong with a main theme as a first track, but inevitably have goofy bordello tracks, lesser variations on the main theme, and largely incidental tracks to derail the listening experience of an album. She Rides Again is not that experience at all. Each track feeds in to the next, pulls you deeper in, to the extent that listening to them outside of a straight-through listen loses some of the charm I think. "Doom Bloom" for instance, is a trancelike ratty riff dragging you along to the pulse of a fairly simple drum beat. But man, after listening to the first 35+ minutes of that record, that guitar sounded absolutely filthy, dizzying, and with every repetition I felt like I was going deeper.

I found this record to be more of a mood piece, versus the imagined cinematic drama of other modern spaghetti western records (). Perhaps you could imagine a bit of narrative from the more thematic tracks like "Redemption of the River Witch" and "Pamela Anderson was a Prophet" (in fact, I'd like to hear the story behind that title), but I don' think it needs it either. With She Rides Again I think Sheverb have really dialed into the vibe that they've been working with from the start, and it's plenty enough to get lost in. Again, this is a big stretch to be considered a surf record (though it is 100% instrumental, by the way), but this surf fan wishes Sheverb finds a wider fanbase with this one. It deserves to be heard.

To my knowledge this is digital only for a devilishly affordable price.


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