Despite a name that vaguely invokes a forgotten Thomas Pynchon character, the music that Kent Carson and Evan King create as Olivia Nowadays sounds far removed from the often chaotic and random processes used to create it. Evan flips through his phone, sharing a few photos: Kent, field recorder in hand, standing near a fountain full of shirtless drunks; another of Evan with a child-size Strat in his lap, holding a toothbrush to its strings.
“Any one of our songs from the first release has recordings from at least three different bedroom studios, and field recordings spanning a few countries,” Evan explains. What results from these disjointed sessions is an accretion of sweet, sometimes saccharine guitar riffs, synth melodies, and found sounds that nods unabashedly to Olivia’s influences in shoegaze, ambient, dreampop, and indie rock.
Asked to describe Olivia’s music, Kent laments “I wish we could call it hypnogogic pop, because that’s what it feels like––pop music to fall asleep on the couch to. But I’m reading the Wikipedia article and that’s already taken.” Evan quips: “we verify stuff with Wikipedia a lot. There’s definitely some pedantry involved.” “Definitely,” Kent adds, “our pedantry outweighs our pedagogy.”