War Tapes were well on their way to being L.A.’s favorite guardians of gloom six years ago, when the quartet released the full-length “The Continental Divide,” which got the quartet mentioned in the same sentence as people like Joy Division, Echo & the Bunnymen and Interpol and helped them get gigs with the likes of Smashing Pumpkins, the Bravery, AWOLNATION and She Wants Revenge. Then, poof. We can imagine that the quartet — siblings Neil and Becca Popkin, with Matt Bennett and Billy Mohler — either unexpectedly found happiness and moved to the beach, or simply sagged under the weight of the world and decided not to carry on. In truth, they say, “Life just happened and new opportunities came up,” the latter including the members’ working with myriad other artists.
Now, says Becca Popkin, “We’re excited to be releasing new music after taking a break.” “Pale Blue Dot,” one of five new songs War Tapes has ready, is a bit less bombastic than the “doom-pop” on that full-length, but no less hard-charging. Over Becca Popkin’s propulsive bass line, the siblings trade vocals while brooding about calamities of life on our pale blue dot. Post-punk is great like that. Welcome back.
||| Stream: “Pale Blue Dot”
||| Live: War Tapes perform Thursday at El Cid along with L.A. Drones and Le Cos. Tickets.
||| Previously: “Dreaming of You”