At Oxeye Daisy’s release show, you would have thought the year was 1993. Cassettes were even available at the merch table. And then there was the music.
Oxeye Daisy’s new EP, They Say You’re a Demon (out July 12) is reminiscent of 90’s coffee-house alternative and post-grunge but with a dreamy edge.
A little more than a year ago, they released their first album, showing us some of their other 90’s flavors with dashes of pop-punk and a song that could have been on a Cranberries’ album. In fact, they’ve co-covered “Dreams” with Tyto Alba before and re-do Chris Isaak here, but They Say You’re a Demon feels more like a clear mood.
The overall album is dark and spacey, like waking up in the middle of the night from a vivid guitar-y dream. Lela Roy’s brogue has an ethereal quality that’s delicate and clear but evokes aggressive power when needed. In “Beth” she volleys between gentleness like Sinead O’Connor and expressive dynamics like Grace Slick. Mixed with dissonant guitar and ghostly synths, Roy takes us back and forth between a clear state of mind and a hazy consciousness.
Their previous self-titled album gravitated in a few directions (alternative, blues, punk) but they all felt like separate ideas. They Say You’re a Demon flows seamlessly.
Even when the bands steps out of the box from the album’s feel, they find a way to integrate those textures without sacrificing the vibe. The opening of “Girls Are The New Boys” strays far from the dreamy atmosphere of the album evoking Dick Dale playing punk, and Roy’s fearless wails embellish the frantic tension of the song until it floats off to Pink Floyd territory mid way.
But through instrumentation and production, the band still maintains their 90s sound. Overt influences like The Cranberries, Veruca Salt, and Garbage, are evident, but they give themselves a darker, avante twist, pulling them away from the pop realm. Whether it’s on Spotify or your revived walkman, They Say You’re a Demon keeps the 90s alive in both the new Denver and Colorado scene at large.