Personnel: Daniel Cundiff (vocals, guitars, drums); Nicole Yun (vocals, guitars); Jonathan Woods (piano, synthesizer).
Audio Mixer: Louie Lino.
Recording information: Austin, TX (11/06/2014-11/15/2015).
Gold and Stone, the self-produced fourth album by Virginia indie pop trio Eternal Summers, sees the group continuing to balance their dreamy side with the energy displayed in their exciting live shows. Previous albums Correct Behavior and The Drop Beneath found the band stepping toward radio accessibility with tunes reminiscent of '90s alternative rock with a bit of a post-punk sensibility. Gold and Stone still has plenty of energetic, hooky songs, especially "Play Dead" and "Black Diamond," but other songs, such as brief opener "Unassigned" and the title track, while sounding gorgeous, don't exactly head for an easy hook. This isn't meant as a complaint, however, as the band is equally adept creating catchy tunes and more atmospheric material, and the album flows smoothly. Songs such as "The Roses" and "Stars You Named" would've fit nicely next to Lush on an early-'90s college radio playlist, while "Together or Alone" is more shouty and anthemic. Album-closer "Bloom" appropriately begins with the lyric "it's not obvious" calmly sung over big rock chords. "Ebb Tide" is the album's most acoustic-based song, and features drummer and occasional vocalist Daniel Cundiff taking the reins from usual lead singer Nicole Yun. Gold and Stone is another intriguing entry in the discography of Eternal Summers, a band who is quickly building up an impressive body of work. ~ Paul Simpson