Haunted Summer, the L.A. duo of Bridgette Moody and John Seasons, embarked on their dreamy sonic explorations in 2013. Their “Something in the Water” EP that year saw the duo dipping their toes in the waters of gauzy synth-pop, but the ensuing time — on-again/off-again touring, incursions into four different studios to work with an array of artists and producers — has helped Haunted Summer fashion a bolder, more precise sound.
That’s evident in “Every Step,” the first single from Haunted Summer’s forthcoming debut, “Spirit Guides” (out Sept. 29). Announcing itself with a splash of distortion and a propulsive drum beat, the song is reminiscent of noise-pop luminaries such as Rocketship and Velocity Girl from the ’90s, churning along as Moody sings about workaday frustrations until a lovely Mazzy Star-like outro. “The song came to us while touring heavily last year,” Seasons says. “It’s about the troubles and struggles of everyday life and how at the end of the day we must climb/take steps so we can find or maintain happiness and love.”
The song, which features Bill Sanderson on Bass and Dante Johnson on drums, was produced by Be Hussey (Radar Bros, Guides, Earth Moon Earth) at the Comp-ny LA studio, one of four rooms Haunted Summer used to record “Spirit Guides.” They also worked at Rancho de la Luna in Joshua Tree, Jim Henson in Hollywood and Ninkasi Studios in Eugene, Ore., and among those contributing on the album are Dave Catching (Eagles of Death Metal) and Chris Goss (Masters of Reality).
It’s been a long road since the release of “Something in The Water.” “It’s an EP we are really proud of,” Seasons says, noting that after its release and a whirlwind of touring, the duo felt immense pressure in making a follow-up. “While never ending the touring cycle for the last four years, we learned a lot about taking our time to perfect what we thought our debut full-length should be. After countless hours in many studios, with many talented producers and players, we crafted exactly what we had envisioned. The album is a vessel into our world of memories, life, love, pain, mystery and darkness.”
||| Stream: “Every Step”
||| Live: Haunted Summer celebrate their album release with a show Sept. 30 at the Hi Hat. Tickets.
||| Previously: “Dawn of the Red”