Pretty Lost (Light Organ)
Capitol 6 leader Malcolm Jack may also write for local rockers Sun Wizard, but judging by the former’s debut full-length Pretty Lost, the singer-guitarist keeps his songs for each project separate. While Sun Wizard slugs out the kind of simply stated guitar anthems you’d expect to have been blasted at suburban tailgate parties in the late ’70s, Pretty Lost offers up something more ornate. Opener “Playing Dead” begins with some lively, old-time piano plunking courtesy of Henry Beckwith, before the whole band jumps into a hard-choogling railroad shuffle. The follow-up number “Cold Ride”, meanwhile, could jump-start a dance party with its sassy, ’60s psych-pop bent.
The eclectic approach to the eight-song set hints that the band is still trying to find its footing, but for the most part its experiments pay off handsomely. That said, the off-kilter caterwauling on the dusty-and-downtrodden chuckwagon ballad “Quit Your Job” leaves something to be desired, compared with the refined and luscious jangle of album highlight “Autumn in the Wind”. Sounding like it would fit somewhere on a playlist with the Fresh & Onlys and Real Estate, the stunner has Jack laying out nostalgic lyrics (“So what if we don’t keep in touch, girl/The past is perfect”) atop a dreamy bed of shimmering guitars and Beckwith’s almost show-stealing piano and organ work. Sun Wizard may have the meat-and-potatoes market cornered, but Capitol 6 has delivered something even more fulfilling with Pretty Lost.