The Tampa, FL residents that make up the dream pop quartet Merchandise also happen to split their time between a number of other projects with decidedly harsher edges, so you’d be forgiven for thinking that the recent move from drum machine to hardcore drummer Elsner Nino would push them back toward the frothing punk scene that spawned them. In fact, “Figured Out,” the band’s second track with Nino behind the kit, seems to force the band’s spacey inclinations ever skyward. Drawing on Cocteau Twins’s slack-jawed jangle, and a whole host of other early 4AD bands (with whom, incidentally, Merchandise recently signed), “Figured Out” is decidedly more focused than the rambling compositions from last year’s Totale Nite, while still holding onto Carson Cox’s mealymouthed, ramshackle vocalizations and guitarist Dave Vassalotti’s fine print leads. This new track is part of a Record Store Day split for 540 Records with former tourmates Destruction Unit and Milk Music, but the band is also supposedly working on their first proper full-length for 4AD, so don’t be too surprised if more Nino-tightened Merchandise tracks start to surface soon.
Stream: Merchandise, “Figured Out”