Call it a stoner remix, but those of us who grew up during the psychedelic ’60s listening to bands like the Strawberry Alarm Clock get what Teengirl Fantasy is doing today. I think it’s what musicians were shooting for back then, but they lacked the technology. Those limitations don’t exist now, and in the hands of skilled computer geeks and turntable artists such as Logan Takahashi and Nick Weiss, the ’80s and ’90s hip-hop and R&B they favor becomes a fluid trance of musical recollections that drift in and out of a listener’s awareness like a dream. You go back to the beginning of a Teengirl song and listen again just to make sure you got it all. And although they deny going there for the weed, it’s a fact that Takahashi and Weiss fattened their musical imagination by taking a year off from Oberlin College to study at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam.
Teengirl Fantasy creates their music by improvising in front of a live audience. If a mix works, they save it and re-tool it over future performances. It puts creativity into a pressure cooker, but for Teengirl, it’s a formula that has paid off. “By developing songs in a live setting, we are able to get immediate feedback on what works and what doesn’t,” says Weiss.
Bloggers were the first to spread the word about Teengirl Fantasy. News eventually reached Pitchfork, where the band’s 7AM earned a sweet 7.2. A mention in the Village Voice was kind as well. What’s next? The duo is working up new songs, says Takahashi, “and once we are out of school, hopefully we will be able to tour continuously.”
Pictureplane also performs.
TEENGIRL FANTASY: Soda Bar, Friday, January 14, 9 p.m. 619-255-7224. $8.