Clicky Clicky Music Blog founder Jay Breitling recently celebrated a birthday, but it’s he who continues to give gifts to us. A few months back he was awarded free studio time by an anonymous donor, available for Breitling to pass along to any young band he saw fit. He selected Boston guitar-pop sextet Aüva, and the fruits of that labor are available this morning in a new three-song EP titled Side Effects.
The EP was recorded with Benny Grotto at Mad Oak Studio in Allston, and the heightened production takes Aüva’s blissful modern pop to even greater heights. Lead track “Pretend” glimmers along before its stomp-about chorus crashes skyward into ethereal beauty, while “All I Need” and “Glitter & Weed” allows the band’s psych-leaning tendencies to propel their surf-rock sound.
“We were given this opportunity by Jay at Clicky Clicky, and we wrote the three tunes right after our summer tour,” says Aüva drummer Michael Piccoli. “So, much of the lyrical material was written about tour, or coming home from tour and settling back into our normal lives. This was our first time being in a professional studio, and having an engineer. We found that having an engineer was very useful, it was great to have an unbiased ear to give us constant feedback and new ideas, and Benny was full of new ideas. We worked very well together. Peerless Mastering, suggested by Benny, mastered the three songs, and they really brought the mixes to life. Jeff Lipton and Maria Rice worked together on the mastering process.”
Breitling says the decision to enlist Aüva was an easy one, and heapssome heavy praise on the band.
“First, I really like what they are doing, particularly with a larger ensemble,” Breitling tells us (disclosure: Breitling has contributed to Vanyaland). “It strikes me as a throwback to Belle And Sebastian, and while what Aüva is doing kind of fits in with the recent surf-referencing trend, I like to think that they are sort of working off-trend, although I have no idea whether they are familiar with the first couple Belle And Sebastian records. The second prong of selecting Aüva was I wanted to do right by both the anonymous donor — who I could go on and on about, which would needlessly embarrass this person — and do right by Benny. Clicky Clicky readers know that the publication has championed a lot of ragged-sounding acts with lots of rough edges. I wanted to pick an act to work with Benny that was going to be pro enough to really be able to benefit from working with him, and hopefully make Benny feel like it was not an onerous experience.”
Listen to Side Effects below via Bandcamp. The album artwork was designed by Nathan Gorey, and the Aüva featured images up top is by Evan Xiner Hong.