Earlier this year, garage-rock band Retoro released one of the best Milwaukee albums of 2022 with the seven-song Hairlush Boutique. Here’s what we said about the record in our “Milwaukee Record’s favorite Milwaukee music of 2022 (so far)” piece from July:
At first listen, young garage band Retoro doesn’t appear to reinvent the wheel on its second album, Hairlush Boutique. This is a record with clear classic punk and proto-punk influences, and a record filled with wonderfully catchy songs. No muss, no fuss. Things start off strong with the shambling and droll “Nihilistic,” followed by the caffeinated and head-bopping “Zoo.” But there are touches that go well beyond bratty punk rock. The jittery “Phone” plays like a scuffed-up Devo song, while “Living To Die” and “Entitled” find Retoro stretching out and adding some psych and jam-band vibes to the mix. No matter the vibes or influences, Hairlush Boutique is a solid slice of terrific songwriting and winning performances. No muss, no fuss.
Recently, Retoro guitarist Mason Mattner added to his local-music resume with the release of two solo songs, “No More” and “Uppercuts And Superfudge.” The former is a loopy, Wurlitzer organ-drenched ditty complete with lyrics that read like an airing of grievances: “No more Americans / No more Americants / No more Patriots / No more pigs on the beat,” Mattner sings in the opening verse. It only gets more pointed from there.
The second song, “Uppercuts And Superfudge,” is an irresistibly lovely and wistful concoction that feels like a combination of twee early-’90s indie rock and a long-lost track from George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass. It’s terrific. Dig that lead guitar!
“No More” and “Uppercuts And Superfudge” are currently Mattner’s only solo songs, though you better believe we’d welcome plenty more.
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