Tombstones in Their Eyes is a post-rock psych band from Los Angeles with several critically acclaimed releases under its belt. Members include John Treanor (guitar, vocals, keyboards, songwriter), Josh Drew (guitar, backing vocals), Mike Mason (bass, guitar) and Stephen Striegel (drums). The band is fresh off the current release of its new EP, Nothing Here. If you’re into a sonic experience that really makes you feel – I’m talking gut-wrenching, brooding mind-altering stuff – then this band is for you.
Their musical influences are an eclectic mix ranging from The Brian Jonestown Massacre to Kyuss to Electric Wizard. This is evident in their sound which patches together elements of many genres, and it really works: think experimental meets stoner rock with hard core edge. The result is a unique form of psych dream rock, consisting of cascading walls of distorted sound, melancholy vocals and echoing gritty reverb.
A view into the infinite is inspired by the music’s rolling tempos and extended fadeouts. The “out-there sound” urges an expanded state of mind, while encouraging self-reflection. It is the perfect marriage of grandiose and minimalism, existentialism and internal turmoil.
Nothing Here stays true to this rhetoric, only requiring three songs to be completely hooked.
The first track “Silhouette” is a perfect intro to the EP, starting slow and coaxing in the listener. Forceful distortion and hollow yet powerful vocals are shadowed by a steady tempo and heavy drone. Stoner shoegaze at its finest, the listener starts to feel they are gradually being guided down the rabbit hole. The slow drain out is the perfect non-ending to lead into the next song.
Already by the second track, aptly named “Take Me Away”, the listener experiences a feeling of full surrender to the music. The clear repetition of these lyrics throughout the song amount to the peak of the EP. It gives the sense of reaching into oblivion, to finding a better place.
Perhaps this led to the name of the title track “Nothing Here”. In anticipation of finding coveted peace in the unknown, this song continues to give the sense of toiling in the same darkness. The psychedelic flow provokes thoughtfulness and reflection, while maintaining dark and angst filled undertones. After a long steady fade out, it comes to a rather unexpected but intentional finite end, driving home the message that despite expectation, there’s “nothing here”. Nonetheless, it leaves the listener craving much more.