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Hear Wildhoney's Blissed-Out 'Naive Castle' For Slumberland's Singles Series

Courtesy of the artist

Black Tambourine, Velocity Girl, Lilys, Lorelei, Stereolab — these are just a few of the artists who released 7-inch singles on Slumberland Records in the late '80s and early '90s. That's a helluva run for any label, but also remarkably prescient, considering the simultaneously softer and stranger indie pop that would follow.

To celebrate its upcoming 30th anniversary, Slumberland is releasing 13 7-inch singles until Dec. 2019, featuring bands like Rat Columns, Pale Lights, Lake Ruth and London's Flowers. Wildhoney is using its single to mark a new locale (the band moved from Baltimore to the west coast) and a shift from the My Bloody Valentine-worship of 2015's Sleep Through It to densely-layered dream-pop wrapped in a cheery melancholy. You can hear that in "Naive Castle" — think Cocteau Twins and The Cranberries, but washed over with Tangerine Dream-y synths, especially in the instrumental coda.

"'Naive Castle' is a bouncy, summery yet wistful track about surveying the confusion and destruction of heartbreak, and taking the first steps to emerge from it," singer Lauren Shusterich tells NPR Music. "It's light and sparkly, but still incorporates some Wildhoney noise."

The B-side features a cover of Sixpence None the Richer's teen rom-com staple "Kiss Me," which the band originally played live at Damaged City Fest to a crowd of hardcore punks earlier this year. This version is far more laid back, sounding like the early '80s French band Antena (which magically linked bossa nova to Kraftwerk) took a time machine to a Now That's What I Call The '90s compilation.

TheSLR30 Singles Subscription Seriesis available fromSlumberland Records. Wildhoney goesstarting Sept. 18.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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