Ricky Hell and the Voidboys L’Appel du Vide LP

The name might make you think this is some cheeky throwback act, but RICKY HELL AND THE VOIDBOYS is delightfully weird, smothering melodic pop in piles of scuzz and skronk. Tracks like “Strychnine” shine by marrying shoegaze-adjacent tones (think Methodrone-era BRIAN JONESTOWN MASSACRE) with hyperactive synth cross chatter. What really makes me stand to attention here, though, is the restraint. RICKY’s voice barely comes up past a whisper, a calm center to a storm of psychedelic layers of sound that manage to stay cohesive throughout. Each track is heartfelt and often gorgeous, but never without being daringly its own beast. Try out “Alaska,” replete with clarinet and glockenspiel, and hear what fuzzy guitar pop music should always sound like.