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Standout Track: No. 3, “Goliath FTW,” packs big, The Flaming Lips-style drums beneath breezy Americana before busting out the group’s signature triple-guitar onslaught. The multi-sectioned song hearkens back to the noisy tunes of Matador Records’ heyday. While bassist and songwriter Dave Mann has been kicking around tunes under the Mittenfields name for a while, he and guitarist Sam Sherwood only put together the band’s extra fuzzy lineup last January, adding guitarists Michael Ball and Donald Seale and drummer Brian Moran.
Musical Motivation: The conversion to guitar centricity took some effort. “It’s not always easy to find space for three guitars, plus Dave plays his bass like it’s a guitar,” says Sherwood. But the quintet made it work. After playing as the group for only a few months, the band went into Inner Ear Studios to track its EP, where Sherwood got a chance to lay down even more noise. “The opening of ‘Cascades’ is me playing feedback like six times one on top of the other, but I’m pretty sure [‘Goliath FTW’] is just the three guitars just doing their thing,” he says.
Britt Pop: With this track, Sherwood says he “wanted to do sort of a hybrid of the slacker-rock Pavement sound and something that reminded me of Austin, Texas.” He adds, “I think that final tag outro has a Spoon sort of a sound to it.” It doesn’t hurt that he borrowed a Britt Daniels-style hollow-body guitar for the recording. That Texas twang shows up more than once. “There’s a breakdown section at the end,” says Sherwood. “I’ve always thought that if we were a southern rock band, that’s where the horn break would be, but we don’t have horns, so it’s just a lot of guitars.” —Ryan Little
Mittenfields performs August 8 at Black Cat Backstage, 1811 14th St. NW. blackcatdc.com.