Toro y Moi, "Underneath the Pine"


Somewhere between recently identified rock subgenres chillwave (hazy, obfuscated, heavily processed indie rock) and yacht rock (smooth '70s rock as practiced by oeuvre icon Michael McDonald) lies the muse of Chaz Bundick (aka Toro y Moi). On "Underneath the Pine," he surprisingly eschews the bedroom sampling and electronics found on his impressive 2010 debut, "Causers of This," for live instrumentation. The thing is, it doesn't sound all that different. There are still woozy nods to Animal Collective ("Elise," "Before I'm Done"), Stereolab's smooth hypnotics ("Go With You"), David Axelrod's jazz-funk psychedelic stew ("New Beat," "Divina") and sounds you'd swear were digitally produced. Bundick, who is clearly something of a virtuoso, played all the live instruments, which at times include organ, classical guitar and perhaps a Mack Truck. "Underneath the Pine" is at its best on songs like "Got Blinded," "Still Sound" and "Divina," with solid grooves and discernable melodies that leap out from the kaleidoscopic bramble.