‘E.S.P’, by Chicago four piece Panda Riot, channels the shoegaze sound of Irish legendary shoegaze band, My Bloody Valentine, but gives the fuzzy distorted guitars a pop sound with up-tempo vocals.
Originally comprising Brian Cook and Rebecca Scott, who first met at a bar in Philly, Panda Riot was born after the pair went on a few dates, and realised they could make beautiful music together. Their debut album, ‘She Dares All Things’, was recorded in their bedroom, and even now Cook has recorded, mixed, and mastered all their albums. He’s even built the custom guitar pedals responsible for their fuzzy signature sound.
While their instrumentals are characteristic of shoegaze, Scott’s vocals are pushed to the forefront, giving the track an almost jolly feel that nonetheless sits well with the sonic blurring of the guitars and dance-rhythm drums.
‘E.S.P’ comes from their fourth and latest album, ‘Extra Cosmic’, which was written during the pandemic. The duo were joined by bassist Cory Osborne after album 3, ‘Infinity Maps’, and now as well on drums by Brian Hilderbrand, ensuring the guitars are not overpowering, and giving the listener another focal point.
The song is accompanied by an animated music video, showing the band as neon line drawings, reminiscent of the scratch art paintings we all did at school.
Do we love ‘E.S.P’? Of course we do – and we’re sure Panda Riot knew we would.