audiotrack This Euphoria

reviewed by Carey Dean Potash

Published in Issue No. 14 ~ July, 1998

I went down to the local record shop to unload some CDs I’ve been using as coasters and some others that were getting dust crusty in the closet; unworthy of residence in the compact disc carousel. I handed 12 CDs over to a pin-cushion faced, green-haired girl at the counter. After 15 minutes of careful calculation, she told me I had $4.00 cash or $4.50 credit to work with. I grabbed the $4.50 and added three crinkled dollars for Davîd Garza’s major label debut This Euphoria.

It was a wise decision and well worth the exchange of 12 CDs. This Euphoria is the most complete, eclectic release I’ve come across in a while. A veteran at 27, with about a dozen independent releases to his credit, Austin, Texas’ Davîd Garza (pronounced DAH-veed) is a keeper.

This Euphoria is the answer to your every-song-sounds-the-same blues. The songs are amazingly diverse without careening totally out of control, ranging from wispy pop to dreamy psychedelic to growling funk to Texas-branded reggae to a 50’s slow-dance ballad. Albums that usually attempt this fail. They sound lost and appear cut and pasted.

Garza’s is a rare exception.

The songs are clearly laced with a retro, seventies texture, and his influences are aplenty, yet there is no denying Garza is offering something very new and very easy on the ears.

“Discoball World” would top the roller-skating party song charts if people still had roller-skating parties. Grabbing the hips of the person in front of you. Kicking up your wheels in a uniform snakeline to the skittish beat and fevered guitar strumming. Garza, sounding a bit like Elvis Costello wearing a muzzle, rocks out with blasts of distortion in the album’s best chance for radio exposure. The catch is immediate; first listen.

Garza showcases his trembling falsetto on title track “This Euphoria,” “Float Away,” and “Flower.” If you listen closely, Dennis and Carl Wilson waft in through your speakers from the grave on the hallucinatory “Float Away.” On “Kinder” and “Glow in the Dark,” Robert Plant emanates from Garza. I told you, this is a very diverse collection.

Once word gets out, he’ll spread like a nasty case of poison Garza. Let’s keep him our little secret. OK, one friend, but that’s it. OK, and one family member in the case of an emergency. Let’s shake on it. A blood pact isn’t necessary. Just spit on your palm and slap your monitor. Ready? On three.

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Carey Dean Potash graduated from Rutgers University with a degree in English. He works as an editor for an online news provider. He's only begun 'writing' short stories, his fiction appearing in a zine called Sink Full of Dishes and in the May issue of Pif. In his words, "I don't plan on riding horseback through the Rainforests with martini in hand at some $10,000 summer writing workshop. I've also never been a roadie for Kiss. And aside from winning 'Best Hair' in the eighth grade, I haven't won any contests." A major influence of his was Dave Louapre, who wrote a short-lived comic strip called Beautiful Stories for Ugly Children.