Lo-fi songwriter Tim Presley keeps exploring on White Fence’s new album | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

Music » Concert Preview

Lo-fi songwriter Tim Presley keeps exploring on White Fence’s new album

by

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

comment

For about a decade, Tim Presley has worked to combine aspects of pop, punk, and lo-fi psychedelia under the name White Fence. On the recent I Have to Feed Larry’s Hawk (Drag City), the guitarist and songwriter delivers what might be his best amalgamation of those musical interests yet. After leading Los Angeles psych band Darker My Love from the mid- to late 00s, Presley launched White Fence in 2010 to focus on stripped-down garage. He filled a few albums with tuneful, compact songs before his more experimental inclinations started cropping up, notably on collaborative releases with artists such as Cate Le Bon and Ty Segall. The opening track of White Fence’s 2013 Cyclops Reap, “Chairs in the Dark,” begins with what sounds like a robot getting strangled over a postpunk backbeat before morphing into a British Invasion throwback with sweetly sung vocal harmonies. Presley continued to indulge his outre tendencies on a self-titled 2015 album billed to W-X, and the following year he teetered toward the baroque on the Le Bon-produced The Wink, his first release under his own name. Hawk adds even more wrinkles to Presley’s catalog; the reverent, waltzing “Fog City,” for instance, makes its somber theatrical pop sound like a subtly subversive take on torch songs. But Presley hasn’t turned from his past to add these new elements, and his prime psych maneuvers on “Neighborhood Light” easily could’ve come from any early White Fence disc—or a 70s dispatch on Ork Records.   v

Add a comment