Lest you judge them by their overly-braided press shot, Ojai, California-based four-or-five-piece Pleasure make an immediate positive impression with unretrofied heavy ’70s muscle, freewheeling Soundgardenisms, desert-heavy jams and a sense that any of the four tracks on their debut For Your Listening… EP can go anywhere at any time. Easy grooves and chunky riffing meet with rhythmic nuance, echoing vocal soul and a richness of approach that goes beyond the individual influences from which they draw all seem to come around to the same point: Pleasure are on the right track and they got there awfully fast.
Comprised of four tracks, all topping six minutes and each named for its number in the running order, For Your Listening… starts chatting up your special lady almost immediately with “1,” getting underway with a classic groove one might expect from Sweden before Southern California, and soon enough the vocals show likewise Graveyard-style vigilance, though the guitars post-chorus are hookier and the vocals more assured and swaggering. Changes throughout the tracks, from loud to soft, builds to peaks, are pulled off with ease and the whole thing winds up with a distinctly Californian flow despite culling inspiration from a range of classic outfits, Sabbath being pivotal but by no means principle by the time “3” hits its lead-driven payoff.
Both Wes Wilson and Tony Melino did a stint on guitar in Annihilation Time — Pleasure is them plus Zach Doiron, Taylor Hellewell and Chris Everett — and the band continues to have an affiliation with Annihilation Time offshoot Lecherous Gaze to the point of playing a show together this Friday, Dec. 14 at Carpenteria & Linden Pub in Carpenteria, CA (more on that here), but sonically there’s little in common, as Pleasure hit on natural classic rock with engaging and accessible songwriting and an exciting but mostly unpunked energy. They formed in 2012 and For Your Listening… is their first release (though there are some other jams posted that are worth checking out), but hopefully it’s not too long before Pleasure check in with another installment, because the impression they make with these tracks goes beyond being a pleasant surprise and right into “I want to hear more of this right now.”
Pleasure are on Thee Facebooks here. Check out For Your Listening… on the player below, courtesy of their Bandcamp: