I’m going to get this out of the way lest I get too annoying with it, but Each Other bears some distinct stylistic similarities to fellow Calgarians (is that a thing?) Women and Chad VanGaalen. The echo in the recording, the chiming guitar chords, the innovative way they structure their chord progressions – all characteristics of what I’m dubbing the Calgary Sound. (Dibs! What? I’m how many years late?) Each Other, like their contemporaries, are masters at creating shimmering pop songs that dart and weave in odd places, through odd time signatures, yet retain every ounce of immediacy and catchiness as Beach Boys or Kinks tunes. That’s pretty heady company. Each Other is worth mentioning in their presence.
The wintry jangle comes from scene vets indeed, as members of Long Long Long and York Redoubt make up the roster, but internet searches turn up very little biographical information because, let’s face it, “each other” as a search criteria turns up an awful lot of unusable junk. Whatev – I’m pretty sure the bandcamp page is enough right now, and you should go there and listen at least to “Ash Mound,” and then possibly the rest of Heavily Spaced, and then you should download it so you can take it everywhere you go. It’s good for the headphones. There’s a lot to rattle around in the space twixt your ears.
There are some, er, quirkier moments on Heavily Spaced that bear mentioning, because they’re a little more out of the ordinary than the standard hook-’em rock action. (I italicize “quirkier” because a case could be made to call the band’s entire oeuvre quirky, but that’s kind of beside the point. Which is … what again?) “Bad Neighbours” (note the affected spelling!) is a seasick carnival ride through a dilapidated development obviously populated by the titular shitbags. Right after, though, is “Good Neighbourhood,” in which you can fall in love and not care who knows! I think. Whirling about in carefree mannerisms is highly encouraged, and even the cockeyed guitar runs are more akin to riding your bike fast over weird obstacles than running from strange dogs. Or maybe whirling is activity of choice for “Strong Spinning.” That makes more sense. It’s the longest song, and would make you dizziest, but it’s got a great chorus that I want to hear over and over again, and if I threw up at the end of it, it would still have been worth the getting there.
But man, closer “Finally Collided” is simply a great song, equally indebted to British Invasion bands and guitar stranglers like Women, and is one of the best songs I’ve heard this year. Granted, this year is still barely two weeks old, but it’s going to be hard to top – it’s short at just over two minutes, and it’s packed with delectable hooks and dressed with squirmy noise. That’s my type of song. It’s like Each Other decided to strip away any conflicting layers and lay it on the line. (Not that there are a lot of layers, but still.) I’m calling it, whether they like it or not – it’s their theme song. I will always remember them for it.
Don’t pass on this action. Calgary’s got some great music coming from it (and, casting a wider net, so does Canada, but that doesn’t really narrow it down much…), and Each Other is the vanguard. Their equally boss debut EP Taking Trips is worth a listen as well. I am refreshed after listening to Heavily Spaced. Bath-scrubbed refreshed. Hair washed with snow refreshed. (I just watched White Christmas – sorry.) It’s a chilly inhale of an EP, invigorating and exciting. I have it on repeat.
RIYL: Women, Chad VanGaalen, Quaker Parents, Long Long Long