Crowd Can Talk and Dressed in Trenches are closely related. They were recorded in separate sessions, but at the same studio (Electrical Audio) and with the same engineer (Mike Lust) and within the space of 12 months. Each finds the band refining its voice – honing songs that are succinct, hooky, and propulsive. There's a newly disciplined attention to detail. Lifeguard write together through collaboration and improvisation, but they’ve learned to streamline their sound, to make each hook, beat, and gesture purposeful.
On each record, there are echoes of underground guitar bands from decades past. This is not record-collector music, though. It’s the product of a present-day community. Lifeguard are, first and foremost, a performing band and the songs are written to stand up in that moment.
“More than old records – before that, before anything – we’re influenced by live shows and people around us,” explains Slater. “The inspiration comes from playing shows with people and having that mind-blown moment of seeing some friend play at Schubas or Book Club,” adds Lowenstein. “It’s happening on these tiny little scales of seeing kids play live and [knowing] this is something new and interesting.”