PAUL MESSIS: Songs of Our Times: LP

Paul Messis runs the gambit of ‘60s style, doing solo albums and playing in two bands: The Suburban Homes and The Higher State. Each outfit is indispensible to fans of the raw side of ‘60s garage bands. Songs of Our Times is Messis’s third solo album and continues to explore ‘60s-influenced harmonies over dryly distorted guitars. “Societies Games” turns up the distortion a bit with a fuzz groove. Recorded over analog equipment, the high distortion creates great early blowout din for a melodic keyboard to rise. “Apathy’s Callin’” shows Messis’s range, performing with an acoustic guitar with minimal accompaniment. The song highlights his exceptional folk sensibilities. A common trap for some current retro ‘60s bands is to let lazy riffs pass, presumably because they sound “old.” Messis is prolific and refreshingly pro at creating a range of music that would be at home on the Teenage Shutdown comps. –Billups Allen (13 O’Clock)