This week’s Synchedin Spotlight is all about the calmer side of surf rock, wrapping up on the beach to see the sun go down. It’s Undercurrent by Lunar Isles!

Lunar Isles, aka David Skimming, is a Scottish multi-instrumentalist skilled in producing dreamy surf pop guitar music. Now newly based in South Korea, he takes a DIY approach to creating, blending jangly indie sounds with soothing beachy vibes. The debut album Tides was released at the start of this year, following a series of singles releases. This week’s Spotlight track is the popular Undercurrent, taken from this debut album.

Undercurrent quite literally kicks off, with a fading in quality that sets the relaxing tone for the rest of the track. Awash with reverb soaked electric guitar, lazily strummed in the best way, the canvas is gently and airily coloured in. Tight and steady acoustic drums guide the harmonic elements of the song on through to the vocals.

A subtle hint of Scottish character and charm gives these soft vocals an even more mellow quality. Rather than dominating the track, the lyrics interject now and then, breaking up the swirling soundscape. The second verse sees more power and clarity push through in the singing, taking this track from just being a gentle washing tide to a more powerful entity.

Layers of intricate but faint guitar licks offer up a sense of understated beauty. The bassline, uncomplicated but effective, provides some warmth and heft, ensuring the track doesn’t float off up into the clouds completely. Spacious vocal harmonies open up the production even more, until an almost ethereal effect is created.

Towards the end of the track, whiffs of surf rock emerge by way of a twangy lead guitar which slides and bends in true 1960s style. Full and sustained reverberating chords ring out the close of Undercurrent, painting a still sunset picture, similar to the work of July Skies. Drums pound decisively ’till the very end, before quickly trailing off into silence.

Undercurrent is a track which doesn’t need to shout to have a forceful impact. At around 6 minutes long, the listening experience is akin to lying in a warm rock pool, bathing in dappled sunlight.

Lunar Isles is set to release his second album, Anchorage on the 12th of November this year. Make sure you don’t miss anything in the run-up to the release, by following Lunar Isles on Instagram, SoundCloud, or subscribing on YouTube.