Rogue Wave's second album, Descended Like Vultures, makes the complex indie stylings of their 2004 debut, Out of the Shadow, seem almost pared-down; here they flesh their sound out with full, almost romantic arrangements. Guitars alternately swell to anthemic proportions and recede into quiet strumming while vocals are similarly well-balanced, weaving their way through tracks and slipping into harmonies. The upshot recalls both vintage Beach Boys and, of course, labelmates The Shins, whom Rogue Wave shared billing with on a North American tour last year. The Oakland-based quartet's lovelorn, slightly literary lyrics, coupled with lead singer Zach Rogue's semi-mournful delivery, and their full, lush guitars hint at a California sound established by bands like, stalwarts of the San Diego scene, Pinback and Heavy Vegetable.
Pick up Descended Like Vultures from Sub Pop.