Shoegaze and dream pop appears poised to reach its most nebulous state as a genre in the coming years, as the “sound” that was once confined to tube amps and fuzz pedals manipulated to a pristine tone have now entered a new age of jazz riffs and funk lines (which is pretty kick ass, in all honesty). While there was never anything wrong with the original iterations of shoegaze and dream pop, these new dream pop adjacent sounds that are popping up every which way are super vibey and ultra cool, with grooves so infectious one can help but move around (even the most reserved of people).
So when Homeshake rolled through town for a stop at the newly rebranded Cobra, it was a no brainer for anyone and every familiar with Peter Sagar to come here the slack pop sounds of his new project. Everything about Sagar and Homeshake is vibey (for lack of a better term) – he just floats on and off stage, casually reworking pedal set ups when there’s too much fuzz noise coming out of a DI, uttering the most lackadaisical “shit man” every so often – and when the music comes along, it’s a trip across the hazy airwaves of PBR&B, funk rock, jazz guitar gone by.
Following opening sets from Snake Cheney and Okey Dokey (who are quickly becoming the local pack-out support group of choice, it seems), Homeshake took the slightly refurbished (mostly new paint job) Cobra stage. Initially things got off to a shaky (cringe) start, with some sort of technical difficulty that was eventually alleviated by switching to the ground input, the Sagar hit the sound guy with a “Hell yeah, let’s fuck with this. I love you man,” before puffs of smoke began to billow out onto and across the stage, setting the ambiance for a casually sensual evening with Sagar and Homeshake.
Running through tracks like “Heat” early on in the set, vibes abounded throughout the crowd as Sagar’s signature guitar sounds wavered out across the wobbling masses, while puffs from one-hitters and edibles furthered the evening’s je ne sais quoi. Shortly thereafter, Sagar addressed a mysterious – but benevolent – fan, “To the guy that bought me a shot before the set – I’m toasted because of you.” Such a statement might bring concern to the crowd were it some other act, but Sagar and Homeshake having sufficiently understood their aesthetic standing, such a fact only heightened the evening.
In his inebriated state, Sagar made the most of the free-wheeling spirit of his 2015 record Midnight Snack, working vocal manipulations to their peak and fleshing out some truly sensuous grooves throughout the evening. Songs like “Khmlwugh” ( which standings for Kissing, Hugging, Making Love, Waking Up, and Getting High) assured everyone that Sagar himself was having the best time of the evening, and in turn allowed the crowd to vibe out even harder as Sagar and the rest of Homeshake grooved harder and harder with each track.
There were occasional interactions with his fellow groovers in the crowd, but Sagar made the evening his own, checking in periodically to quip “Oh man, this is a funky one man. You guys okay? Everyone okay? I feel amazing,” while playing with his vocal effects, which made the scene all the more entertaining. That preceded a super R&B feel to “Call Me Up,” which ended up being one of the highlights of the set. As a whole, the set was one of the grooviest, vibey-est, chilled out, sensual shows to roll through town in a minute, and it was all because of Homeshake’s front man Peter Sagar and the eternal quest for peak vibe.