Rolling Stone (p.77) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[With] waterlogged guitar fuzz that builds into a thick wash and varies the formula with hippie-commune harmonies, space-alien dirges, [and] acid-folk jangles..."
Q (Magazine) (p.104) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[I]t's playful rather than facetious, and the combination of sweet pop tunes and mean distorted guitar is as winning as it ever was."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.94) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[O]n TWINS the San Franciscan has produced another tangle of urgent hip-thrusters, messy scissor kickers and would-be long-lost NUGGETS selections from 1966."
Paste (magazine) - "TWINS shows Segall again tapping into our musical pleasure centers with its spotless hooks, grimy guitars and unhinged sing-alongs...it's primal and timeless, and it's as Neanderthal as it is sophisticated."
Audio Mixers: Ty Segall; Eric Bauer; Jesse Nichols.
Recording information: Bauer Mansion, San Francisco, CA (12/2011-04/2012).
Photographers: Annabel Mehran; Gillian Chaitlin.
Bay area garage rock shapeshifter Ty Segall churned out more and more different types of songs in the four-year space between his 2008 beginnings and his fifth album, Twins, than most acts do in their entire lifespans. In between constant touring and seemingly endless split 7"s and compilation tracks, Segall managed to release two other collaborative full-lengths in 2012 leading up to this wholly solo affair but predicting yet another shift in his restless sound. From the start there's been a core of lo-fi garage basics intrinsic to Segall's constant output, with possessed guitars and often-times masked vocals terrorizing burly, bubblegum punk whose melodies have drawn ceaseless comparisons to the equally gnarled work of deceased powerhouse songwriter Jay Reatard. 2011's critically acclaimed Goodbye Bread was something of a reflective breather, however, insomuch as Segall is capable of slowing down. Moderate tempos and downer tunes filled up the record, adding equal parts of Lennon influence to the growing amount of Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd-inspired tunes. A split release with like-minded lo-fi maven White Fence in early 2012 hinted at the psychedelic sheen that fully arrives on Twins. The album's 12 tracks are some of the spaciest and grooviest that Segall has turned in to date, with hand-clapping, falsetto crooners like "Love Fuzz" approaching some kind of demented take on glam, while "You're the Doctor" marries hyperactive pop melodies to a fried garage stomp. Without ever losing Segall's distinct songwriting character, Twins stealthily goes all over the map. The changes in atmosphere show up most glaringly when he dips out of Beatles/Barrett worship for more hippie-infused flare. "The Hill" opens with some mantra-like chanting female vocals before exploding into a blast of fuzz guitar somewhere between Hawkwind's Space Ritual and early explorations by the MC5. The album is stretched between this kind of heaviness, which resurfaces on the monolithic "Handglams" and the slightly more even-tempered hippy-leaning fare like the acoustic-based "Gold On the Shore." Somewhere in the middle is Segall's signature garage pop rattle, but Twins offers it up at its most varied, most coherent best. While it's likely that his next record will be on a different page completely, Twins is a bright moment in a nearly ceaseless evolution, and one of the most fluid and successfully ambitious in Ty Segall's catalog. ~ Fred Thomas
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