White Fence
Family Perfume, Vol. 1

Image courtesy Woodsist.

Tim Presley of White Fence subscribes to the notion that the more songs, the better, so he keeps 'em short, loud, and to the point. The effect is like Syd Barrett by way of early Guided by Voices, but with more of a punk-rock edge.

Presley's third record, Family Perfume, consists of two parts. The first arrives on April 3, the second on May 15. Fourteen tracks appear on Vol. 1, 15 on Vol. 2, and 28 on Vols. 1 and 2, but the only selection missing from the latter is a totally extraneous introductory bit.

Other than his new single with Ty Segall, I wasn't familiar with Presley, but I've been enjoying this acid-pop release, even if I tend to prefer more structure, and he alternates between formal compositions, like "Balance Yr Heart," and more abstract tracks, like most everything else on the LP. The way he stretches things out on "It Will Never Be," however, comes close to Barrett-era Floyd territory.

He describes his method as follows: "Wake up. Write. Write. Record. Tweak. Write. Record. Swallow. Tweak out. Tweak. Bounce. Write. Wake up. Record." Adds Presley, "I'm a slave to my cats. I feed them before I feed my stomach."

A taste of Presley's live show.

If he sounds like a spaced-out Syd at times; at others, his slight nasal tone evokes the young Dylan (in most every publicity picture, he's cradling a cigarette, so I seriously doubt that clarity of voice ranks among his highest priorities).

To judge by Family Perfume, Vol. 1, Presley fits perfectly into the Bay Area's lo-fi, psych-garage scene, as exemplified by Segall, Greg Ashley, Thee Oh Sees, the Fresh & Onlys, Sonny & the Sunsets, etc., though it remains to be seen whether he'll break out in the same way. With some fine tuning, I think he could.

Woodsist releases Family Perfume, Vol. 1 (LP and download) on April 3. On May 15, they release Vol. 2 separately (LP and download) or in combination with Vol. 1 (CD and cassette). Click here for info on Presley's LP and tour with Ty Segall.