Throw around the term pop-rock and the mind initially goes to some sort of middle of the road, fashion-driven dross that neither delivers the immediacy of the former nor the integrity of the later. But what if there was a way of taking the instant hook and inherent melody of a pop approach and weld it onto a more robust rock vehicle. Surely anyone who could do that would be carried head high through the streets, would be called saviours, the rainmakers of this current music drought, would be regarded as heroes and brave cross-genre gene splicers of the modern musical age. Or if you are looking for a more modest title you could just call them Yam Haus.
It’s all very well making music which is intricate and introverted, dense and technical, big and clever but some times you just want a song which is, well, fun. It sometimes is that straight forward, and the music and especially the accompanying video for West Coast is just that. One part pop vibrancy, one part indie cool, it’s a well constructed, direct and delicious, chart and radio friendly track. Unashamed, unabashed, uncomplicated and wonderfully memorable.
But of course direct is not the same as simple and there is an art to writing, honing and editing an idea down into a clean-limbed and well-toned song. Every line, every sentence, every beat has to be there for a reason and West Coast is a classic example of this at work. Every note, riff and melody serves a purpose and if something is surplus to requirements then they understand that you should run without it and let the spaces that this creates fill up with atmosphere and anticipation, let words have room to hang and notes space to fade.
The result is a groove fuelled and brilliantly effective song built for accessibility and with summer chart hit stamped all over it. West Coast is proof that you don’t have to over complicate things, that the right few musical ingredients blended well are much more effective than a stodgy, overloaded and unnecessarily weighed down concoction every time.