words: Michael Brooks
Date Stuff, the art-pop duo of Karla Bernasconi and Abby Black, are experts in organized calamity. “Long Con”, the first single from Date Stuff’s self-titled EP (out October 20 on Sooper Records) is an alluring and dizzying slab of indie rock that refuses to sit idle. Blink for a second and you’re likely to miss something as they effortlessly juggle elements of math rock, emo, and jazz. “Long Con is about gender identity and trying not to get upset” said Bernasconi about the track. Date Stuff keeps you on the edge of your seat by forgoing conventional songwriting methods and turning the verse/chorus song structure on its head entirely. Bernasconi manages to stuff an entire album's worth of riffs into the track’s three minute run-time, drawing the listener closer with each twist and turn. Black’s drums are as meticulous and sensational as Bernasconi’s intricate guitar lines, the two of them perfectly complimenting and feeding off one another, making the duo sound much larger than a two-piece. With so much going on it’s hard to put an exact finger on Date Stuff; there are multiple winks and nudges to their influences but they never come across as imitators. At certain parts they come across like Tall Friend doing an American Football cover and the closing seconds of the song sound like Palm if they were signed to K Records. But make no mistake, there’s nobody out there who sounds quite like Date Stuff.