To South Floridians, St. Augustine is remote, uncharted turf, a place you might have visited on a family road trip, full of piratey old town streets and surreally, blissfully empty beaches. But that city, the state’s oldest, is rising artist Levek’s chosen home base after a peripatetic young adulthood spent first in Orlando and Gainesville. As such, it’s unsurprising to hear, in the material leaked from his forthcoming debut LP, a certain expansiveness and a love of all things old.
The first single from the album, “Black Mold Grow,” plays like the long-forgotten B-side of an old vinyl single moldering in a thrift store. While the general tempo and sensibility of the track jibes well with a contemporary taste for chill vibes, the overall effect is that of a nugget of late-’60s or early ’70s AM radio ephemera. There’s a little funk, a little bossa nova, a tiny bit of orchestral brass, and plenty of swooning vocal harmonies that rise and fall in waves.
The latest single, “Girl in the Fog,” follows a less horn-driven tack, but offers up a similarly crate-digging sensibility. The same obsession with multi-tracked, far-away vocals remain, but the music here is straight-up psychedelic folk carefully picked on acoustic guitar.
Yes, this is conscious pastiche, but at least it’s a kind that hasn’t been much attempted lately — and it’s one with great live potential. In fact, for a coming tour, Levek, the person born Daniel Levesque, has fleshed out the act into Levek, the band.
But before he and his entourage start scoring (more) national hype through a tour of buzz-worthy national venues this fall, you can catch him on our turf this Saturday. He performs at Green Room as part of the event By Way of Wes Anderson produced by Subculture and sponsored in part by Salty Eggs. His music’s unabashed love of muted tones, nostalgia, and restraint should dovetail well with the celebration of Anderson’s film aesthetic.
Levek, with Saskatchewan, at the By Way of Wes Anderson event, 10 p.m. Saturday, September 22 at Green Room, 109 SW 2nd Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Admission is $5; age 21 and up. Call 954-449-1030, or visit greenroomlive.com