With the 2016 self-titled debut of Prism Tats, South African transplant Garrett van der Spek introduced the world to his moody and intelligent, psych-inflected take on post-punk.
After spending a year on the road in North America—including support slots with indie-rock icons like Guided By Voices, Surfer Blood, and Nada Surf—the L.A.-based artist quickly headed back into the studio to begin work on a more concept-driven and thematically ambitious batch of songs.
To be released by ANTI- Records on July 28, Prism Tats’ five-song EP 11:11 - recorded with producer Chris Woodhouse (Thee Oh Sees, Ty Segall) - explores unsettling themes of self-inflicted isolation, working-class hopelessness, and the emotional damage of technology addiction. At the same time, the EP shows a strong sense of defiance in the face of the mounting fear and anxiety that have recently infiltrated van der Spek’s adopted home. “Most of these new songs came from taking in what’s going on in the world today, and being afraid of the future we’re headed toward,” he points out.
"Used to Be Cool” is the latest track to emerge from the EP, of which van der Spek says,
“Used To Be Cool is not a song about global warming. Stylistically it's loosely inspired by “Let's Dance” era Bowie, lyrically it describes growing bored of listening to the egomaniac recount their glory days, back when they were young and high.”
Listen to “Used To Be Cool” here:
Talking about the EP, he says; “11:11 is perhaps the most diverse batch of songs I've put together on a record, the result of drawing from various styles and influences to experiment in the studio. Through all of these songs runs my familiar lyrical cynicism, but musically they're more playful than any of my previous releases."