On the 20th of May Flaggs from San Diego, released their latest EP ‘Take a Ride’, dishing out their mix of beach indie pop rock. I’m really glad to say that they have progressed a good deal since their last EP ‘Beach in her Hair’. The new four track release is much tighter and they seemed to have refined their sound somewhat. One thing that did disappoint however was the mix. While this may have been on purpose and to give the impression of a live sound, the entire EP is very muddy and lacks clarity in a few too many ways.

The first and title track ‘Take a Ride’ is a bit of a goer and brought me straight back to the days of Jefferson Airplane with a very sixties vibe. With all my pedantic qualms about the mix, it actually serves this track very well, giving it a sort of vintage sound. Lindsay Lee, the lead vocalist holds this track together with a full and strong voice however I couldn’t help but cringe at the lyrics, which go on vaguely about driving in the sun. It all seems a bit clich├ęd to be honest.

Next up was a much calmer tune ‘Demon In His Way’. To begin with I liked the riff but very quickly I got very bored. The vocal melody felt like it was lacking enough movement to be the primary focus of an already quick simple song. If I’m honest I didn’t hate it at all but this would probably be the track where I would quietly shoot off to get a drink from the bar while seeing them live.

The third track ‘Young Love’ is great and actually made me smile the whole way through. Its 1950s beach rock vibe again suits the EP’s foggy, live sound. The bassist Diana really shines here. While playing a simple enough part she locks into the drummer and finds a really lilting groove. I think it actually makes the song.

To finish up the EP there’s ‘Cheap Life’. A punk rock tune at a much higher tempo and pace. I believe a great way to end an EP is with a bang and this track lives up to this challenge. With a good few fills, drops and breaks, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

In all I really liked this EP. It’s not something I would listen to everyday and it’s a genre that I find can be a little simple at times but Flaggs do it justice with a good deal of energy. I generally get the impression that they had a lot of fun recording it from their dynamics and intonations throughout. A feel good rock EP for the summer, if that’s the kinda thing you’re into.

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