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Brooklyn-by-way-of-Boston shoegaze foursome Infinity Girl have long been heralded by the rock cognoscenti of the day here in their formation city. Early shows of theirs — held almost exclusively in the basement at Cambridge’s Elks Lodge — were sweaty, noisy affairs that highlighted them as one of many promising Jazzmaster-touting, ’90s-worshipping bands in town. Their dual 2012 releases — debut LP Stop Being On My Side and its companion, the Just Like Lovers EP — more than delivered on that promise, distilling a variety of in-vogue references into a swirling, thrilling, and most importantly, emotionally engaging wall-of-sound. 2015’s Harm proved beyond a doubt what those early songs hinted at: Infinity Girl were a rare band of their ilk, a shoegaze band that had something worth paying attention to beneath the din.
Which brings us to now, the end of their run. While recorded without any sense of finality, new LP Somewhere Nice, Someday — which gets its proper local release this Saturday (September 9) at a matinee Middle East show — does have some sort of feeling of closure by virtue of circumstance. The drum-less, heavily-strummed sway of “The Comfort of What I Had” works as warm welcome to the record’s rich sonic exploration and as a thesis statement of sorts for its augmented narrative.
As frontman Nolan Eley mentioned in an interview with Allston Pudding, their most cherished moments weren’t high profile label singings or packed gigs, but the quieter moments on tour they shared as friends. The band’s choice to call it quits on their own terms feels part and parcel with that sentiment.
Pre-release singles “But I’m Slow” and “Headlights” continue the band’s storied sonic progression, with drummer Sebastian Modak’s tricky-but-sturdy rhythms driving the pair of songs in opposing directions with great intensity. Perhaps most impressive is the pacing of late-album highlight “Taking Your Picture.” Despite not rising far beyond a mid-tempo lurch, its dizzying parts suggest increased movement around Eley’s sing-song melody. Finally, much like the opener, “The Winner Always Talks” takes on added weight given the news of their imminent breakup. Unintended or not, its message ultimately suggests some sort of closure. This band may have not meant something to everyone, but it meant everything to a certain few.
It should be said that Infinity Girl “broke up” once before — in Cambridge no less — following the release of Just Like Lovers. Their initial run effectively ended with a blistering set on the night of its release that at its conclusion saw Eley drag his guitar across the well-trodden stage at the now-defunct T.T. The Bear’s Place. An awkward embrace of sorts occurred and that was that. No doubt this finale will bear a bit more weight.
Somewhere Nice, Someday is out today on tape/digital from Disposable America and you can purchase a copy here. In addition to the Cambridge farewell, Infinity Girl’s say goodbye to Western Mass tonight at Laughing Dog Bicycles in Amherst and last night wrapped up pleasantries in Brooklyn.
INFINITY GIRL + KINDLING + ELIZABETH COLOUR WHEEL + LEANER :: Saturday, September 9 at The Middle East, 472 Massachusetts Ave. in Cambridge, MA :: 1 p.m., all ages, $10 in advance and $13 day of show :: Facebook event page :: Advance tickets