New Music Alert: Palm Poko - "Tiny Island"

pp Some excellent DIY releases build places from their sounds, construct territories where the artist’s dreams and memories repeat themselves to us like a film. There, the dimension between their imagination and our reality fills into a collective dream space—we feel the music’s imagery as though we are surrounded in it. Palm Poko succeeds in this way, wearing a number of different influences proudly, oftentimes merging many sounds at once. Alex Futtersak, sole songwriter and member of Palm Poko, takes us into his lush and wonderful world in this refreshingly unique release, Tiny Island.

Though comprised of a mere two songs and a concluding interlude, Palm Poko fuses childlike joy and playfulness with the glitchy chaos of drug-fueled memory in this excellent EP. In “Isle Othello,” percussion scurries under sundrenched clouds as the vocals provide gentle warmth, reminiscent of Ben Gibbard in his younger days. The melodies bring it alive, evoking the psychedelics of the atmosphere while still retaining catchiness.

Palm Poko’s musicianship is intricate, emotional, and dense with imagery. This is proven with “Hannalina Hill,” which is tangled in the artificial greenery of long-gone Nintendo summers. Awash in drifting harmonies, we sense the grief of a dead memory, but we listen to its spirit continue singing. Lost in a serene haze of omnichord twinkles and guitar strumming, the music leads us into a ghostly ascension.

By the time we reach “Continue?” we feel as though we’ve traversed Palm Poko’s tiny island. As we sail away, we reflect on the experience. The final track asks if we should continue, and here at Capitol Sound, we give a resounding “yes,”—we want more! Palm Poko’s new EP, Tiny Island, is a wonderful treasure in the scene and it comes highly recommended for anyone interested in original indie music.

Keep up with Palm Poko on Bandcamp.

Written by Jonathan Koven