By Jose Mujica
June 11, 2019
Mystic Drive-Thru, the latest offering from Charlotte-based psych-hop act, Dirty Art Club (Matt Cagle), is an eerily alluring instrumental composition from start to end. The upbeat and bright synths paired with downright ghostly samples color the project with a peacefully haunting vibe that makes it ideal music to disassociate to. The lo-fi sound that we’ve grown accustomed to by Dirty Art Club is embellished by a lush and full breadth of instrumental additions that round out the tracks, giving them weight and a real sense of satisfaction after their conclusion.
The surrealist artwork of the band’s covers by Bryan Olson (Shadowgraphs) accentuate the nebulous and spacey atmosphere found in their music. Mystic Drive-Thru is no different, featuring a Dali-esque scene of two busts, seemingly peeled like fruit intertwined with planets and stars, staring at one another overlooking the dark side of the moon.
A refreshing drop from Dirty Art Club, whose last project Basement Séance dropped in 2017; Mystic Drive-Thru is simultaneously a declaration that D.A.C. hasn’t gone anywhere and proof the distinct soft psychedelic sounds that have become Dirty Art Club’s brand are evolving ever still. From the opening track, “Hotel Spaghetti,” which feels like riding a carousel in the clouds to the bouncy and heady ending track aptly titled, “Hang High,” at no point throughout the EP does the ear grow bored or disinterested. The project as a whole does a great job of capturing the beauty of contrasting emotions in a wonderfully sweet and sinful manner. The humorous sampling and off-beat lo-fi production has a darker, more psychedelic tint that’s indicative of the current “dark psych” trend within hip-hop, managing to blend old and modern expressions into a cohesive concoction.
Mystic Drive-Thru may be some of Dirty Art Club’s most impressive work yet, if only there were more material to dive into. It may have been more of a tease than a satisfying taste with only 5 tracks, especially after D.A.C’s 2017 23-track Basement Seance, but it’s a tantalizing one nonetheless.