Von Hayes Evident Eyelid

[State Capital; 2008]

Rating: 3.5/5

Styles: indie rock, power-pop
Others: Guided by Voices, Superchunk, The Replacements

Longtime Phillies outfielder Von Hayes unwittingly lends his name to this East Coast four-piece, who knock out punchy, lo-fi indie rock. Evident Eyelid, the band’s 20-track debut, is a homemade four-track recording in the honored tradition of old Guided by Voices, Sebadoh, and Superchunk. There’s more than a passing resemblance to classic GBV records like Bee Thousand and Propeller: the song titles themselves could easily be Pollard-penned (“Ellen Degenerates,” “Auspicious Falcons,” “Karen Dreams in Hardcore”). The record was even mastered by GBV collaborator Todd Tobias.

With 20 songs over 34 minutes, the band is careful not to overstay their welcome on any number – the longest track clocks in at 2:34. Standouts are the Superchunk (think “Tossing Seeds”) sound-a-like “Ellen Degenerates,” rave-up rockers “Chaos Fading” and “Karen Dreams in Hardcore,” and the bratty “Mr. Guts,” which plays out like a rock remix of The Mountain Goats’ chestnut “Riches and Wonders.”

As you might’ve guessed by the laundry list of their obvious influencers, Von Hayes aren’t exactly innovators, but I’m not alone as a sucker for this kind of thing. If you ever wished that Guided by Voices stopped making records after Under the Bushes, Under the Stars, the downright charming Evident Eyelid will push the right buttons.

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