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The Oohlas

Who? Los Angeles’ Oohlas are led by Greg Eklund, former drummer for Everclear, who steps in front of his kit and recruits brother Mark Eklund (bass and vocals), Ollie Stone (guitar and vocals), and various drummers to round out his new band. Their debut album, Best Stop Pop, comes via Stolen Transmission.

What’s the Deal? The Oohlas boast a pop sound as fun as their name, and their blissed-out songs are totally hummable. The band’s bright anthems have sugary melodies and big, jangly guitar riffs, reminiscent of some of the finest rock to come out of the mid-’90s (Veruca Salt, Belly, the Pixies). When the group ambitiously layer on the fuzz, as they begin to do with opener “Gone,” infectiously chiming vocals are there to steer the song from claustrophobic to gently trippy.

Fun Fact: Back in 2000, Greg Eklund and his wife were in the London suburb of Wembley Park when they were caught in the middle of a Newcastle United/Chelsea semi-cup final riot at Wembley stadium. “I recorded thirty minutes of [it]: Singing, yelling, cursing, bottles being smashed, our train being rocked, and the sounds of riot police on horses as we exited into the street,” Eklund told “Years later… I used that recording in our song ‘The Rapid’ [because] I thought it would contrast nicely with Ollie’s lyrics on the claustrophobic nature of public transport.” MONIQUE LAVIE

Now Hear This:
The Oohlas – “Small Parts” (Download MP3)

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