Essential New Music: Thee Oh Sees’ “An Odd Entrances”

If you’re looking for the meltingly hot wall of sound that California garage-rock champions Thee Oh Sees are known for in their new LP (released just a few months after their previous album), you may be disappointed. Here, John Dwyer and Co. wax bucolic, bringing forth strange psych/folk sounds that bring to mind twisted Arthurian legend (with flute solo!) more than the kind of overwhelming sternum-crushing sound for which they’re known. But anyone who likes Thee Oh Sees knows that there are many faces to Dwyers’ work, ranging from electronic twiddling to psych trance. Some of this widening gyre of experimental sound comes through on An Odd Entrances, but there’s a definite misty-isle feel to this record, culminating in the Beatlesque “At The End, On The Stairs.” It may not be what you expect, but it’s got the same Dwyer DNA that’s always made the band compelling.

—Devon Leger