When Pacific Mean Time released their 2014 debut, the band was in transition. Entering the studio as established Portland power pop quartet, Little Beirut, plans were to record the follow-up to 2010’s critically acclaimed, Fear of Heaven. Be it wanderlust, angst, or an effect of the grey skies and rugged expanses of the Pacific Northwest, the following months included enough changes in lineup, sound, and focus to compel reemergence as a new band altogether. From the first broken toy sounds in the intro of opening track, Blindfolds, it was apparent the group had shed crunchy guitars and harmony laden sing-a-long choruses in favor of a more subtle, slinky, and sexier approach, “sizzling with glorious organic and electronic textures”.

If PMT’s self titled debut showcased an indie band exploring new textures, 2018’s follow up, An Ocean to Swallow, solidifies this notion and ups the ante, presenting an intentional vision—a band comfortably in control of its sound. Exquisitely recorded and produced at Portland’s Jackpot! Recording Studio and Echo Hill Studio by Los Angeles based engineer/producer Rian O’Connell Lewis (Gorillaz, D.R.A.M.) in conjunction with guitarist, Edwin Paroissien, the 10 tracks on this self-released record bristle with hypnotic, propulsive beats; soaring synth arpeggios; rolling bass lines; and seductively understated vocal melodies.

Subtle and sexy has arrived in style. But don’t assume the listening experience will be relegated to cerebral explorations only to be enjoyed with the bong and headphones; new band member Anders Bergstrom’s drums weave a dizzying line between organic and electronic, man and machine, providing a muscular backbone that’ll just as likely have you leaving the couch to shake your ass.

“Lost some faith, but found some grace, shrug along”, singer Hamilton Sims emotes in Water Sign, a delicate moment of existential consideration belied by John Hulcher’s propulsive fuzz bass attack—reminding us that life can be full of questions and short on answers, but let’s have a good time in the process of trying to figure it all out! Lewis’s mixes are crisp and crunchy, painting a full resolution picture of a band comfortable with weaving dense sonic textural tapestries, but experienced enough to know when to rely on the essential elements.

An Ocean to Swallow ships to college radio June 19th. Full digital release (iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify, etc.) set for early July. Release show fall of 2018 TBD.