What’s so alluring about Reading Rainbow‘s Prism Eyes is its intangible familiarity. Duo Robbie Garcia and Sarah Everton deliver a naked, stripped down lo-fi hearkening to 1960s American pop that’s peppered with hints of 90’s era Sleater Kinney. Much like fellow garage-punk genre benders Best Coast and Wavves, Reading Rainbow does a lot with a little. Their permaculturally minded compositions may in part be fueled by their health-food obsession—a clean body equals a clear mind after all, and even in their muddled hazy sounds, clarity is actually ever present.
The chunky guitar work and droning lyrical hooks of their not-quite upbeat tracks, like the album’s tangy opener, “Wasting Time,” the epic “Runaways” and the outstanding “Cut in Two” sinks deep into parts of us accessible only through hollow sounds and reverb.
What’s so lasting about Prism Eyes is its accessibility, its now-and-then-ness that seems somewhat imperative, though it’s not exactly clear why. The echoey “Let’s Dream Tonight” and “To My Gemini” offer a monotonous reprieve from the over-produced and under-titillating Kanye-esque cluttered world refracting into everything. Prism Eyes is kind of like the way a big healthy salad can reverse the damage of too many Big Macs; Reading Rainbow may not be as dramatic as the other options out there, but nonetheless their essence is a necessity. And despite our seemingly endless feedback loop of insanity, everything is all right even when it’s not, or at least, through the haze it appears that way.