Tauk - Pull Factors EP
Record Label: Self-released
Release Date: June 26, 2012
Can a jam band also be a post-rock instrumental project? Sure why not? Meet Tauk. They hail from the vernal shores of Long Island and just released their new EP Pull Factors. To date they have performed at Bonnaroo, Hangout Music Fest and the Summer Camp Music Festival. They are also fresh off the first annual Peach Music Festival, curated by the Allman Brothers Band. To date the quartet has shared the stages with OAR, Robert Randolph and the Family Band and Toubab Krewe.
Their only shot at a single is the opener "Home to Me," a breezy and whimsical cut that opens with a gorgeous and vernal guitar line and settles into jam territory at the three-minute mark, buttressed by shimmering piano. Fans of Phish will certainly find something to like here. There are no vocals but there is something definitely accessible about it.
From there, the disc ventures off into epic territory. "Stepwise," is a hazy seven minute offering that ducks and darts around corners, meandering and snaking its way to the finish. Things get a bit steamy at the four-minute mark when a sweltering guitar solo enters the picture and from there the song is an absolute knockout.
"Temptation Lane," is nearly nine minutes and drifts into something hallucinatory and hypnotic and thrives off of Alric "A.C." Carter's dreamy piano work. Close to the four minute mark the song nearly stops and it feels like a storm cloud might be threatening on the horizon. Lord knows what exactly is going on but hot damn if it doesn't work. Second by second the song picks up steam and roars onward to the finish.
"Side Project," is another breezy four-minute cut that feels akin to a nap on a hammock or front porch swing. The guitars are a bit more playful and as a whole it is decidedly less intense than anything so far on the album. And it is in this care-free spirit that Pull Factors makes all the sense in the world. In short, creating music like this is no easy task but the band makes it seem all too easy and even harder to dislike. By the time, the seven-minute closer "We Hope Your Exorcism Was Successful," finishes, the urge to go back and listen again is almost overwhelming.
That Pull Factors is as brilliant as it is does not come as a surprise. The disc was engineered by Dave Natale (Rolling Stones, Fleetwood Mac) and produced by Robert Carranza (Jack Johnson, Mars Volta). But even veteran studio hands can only do so much. In the end, the credit goes to Tauk. These are musicians wise beyond their years who perform with an effortlessness that is hard to ignore. Long Island, you have done it again.