LASKA weaves an introspective gem with Endless Patcher

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Pop-folk group LASKA wanders in the footsteps of sister bands like Haim, Joseph and The Andrew Sisters, while rejuvenating the genre with their own distinctive dynamic. Their second album Endless patching comes out on June 3 with an exceptional line-up at the Amsterdam Bar in Saint Paul.

Hannah, Bex and Mookie Morton joined me for an interview discussing the new album, how LA influenced their Midwest sound, and even revealing that secret sound you hear at the start of their second single. Evan Middlesworth, their producer and guitarist also joined in to share his production style and experience working with the trio.

Collage by Leah Nasgowitz

This unique closeness you get with family groups is immediately heard when you listen to the sisters. They were all homeschooled at some point and their mother always said, “Your sisters are your best friend, so you better love them.”

Everything being musical, this close bond was a natural glue that helped create LASKA. Their mother has been a huge advocate for the girls, driving them to shows before they had licenses and reinforcing the focus on creating music together.

Photo by Rozack

Evan attests that there is a creative shortcut when working with the sisters. Being able to be direct, cut out all the bullshit and know how each of them hears things is a huge plus for recording. This very united language of the group allows greater creative freedom and comfort rooted in trust.

“The good thing is that they are very talented and everything happens very quickly. We will do 4-5 takes and if you don’t like something, talk about it. Then they move on,” shares Evan.

Two of the sisters now live in Los Angeles, furthering the progression of the band’s overall sound. LASKA’s debut single “Funhouse” is a prime example of this West Coast influence. The song’s chorus has a SoCal vibe, while the track’s underlying energy is still planted in the Midwest.

“Funhouse” is about social anxiety, which the world has seen a huge rise in. The video shifts from a deserted landscape to the bustling entertainment of a pier. The clever symbolism of feeling lonely while surrounded by people works perfectly in the visuals.

The themes of Endless patching are to recognize the magic of going through life. It is being present while being insightful of this journey, while acknowledging the joy. Although mostly written before Covid, there is an undeniable feeling in tying them together to our experiences of 2020. We have all been compelled to remove distractions and find what matters most in our lives, acknowledging our life paths .

“I think overall our songs have found new meaning and have an adaptability to them. There is still a newness and current feeling in them that matches the world we live in now,” says Bex.

The album is a seamless quilt of dreamy folk-pop songs with tasteful production stuff and sounds. The opening seconds of “Dog Bite” are an 1800s zither offered to Evan. Made up of 48 strings and being as old as it is, you can’t really tune it. Played more like a percussion instrument, it’s that touch of intrigue that draws you into the song. “Dog Bite” stands out as a healing bruise that reminds you of the past while giving you hope for the future.

“Purple Blue” takes a more minimalist approach with piano, drums and strings. Hannah’s observational traits sparked the song’s creation as she sat in the parking lot at work. She saw two people holding hands and kissing. That draw of seeing them frankly together spoke to her, wanting to have that feeling inside of her.

“Window Shopping” is another nifty track written for a friend of theirs who was going through a breakup. Looking back through that relationship window, realizing how you didn’t appreciate it as much as you wanted to, and seeing it differently now that it’s over. The wavering drum parts of the opening verse lead into a glass gallery of shimmering guitars and the gradual building of the sisters’ mix.

Dog Bit Cover Illustration

LASKA also displays a knack for tapping into strong emotions in her writing. When you write from a vulnerable place, authentically releasing your feelings, you are sure to find a listener on the other end. Although “People Pleaser” is a song they’ve been playing for a while, Mookie shares that it still carries an emotional charge in its message.

“This song made me cry all the time. It’s like looking back on my past, singing for the person I was 3 years ago. It’s a healing feeling now when we play it.

Endless patching is the direct result of the comfort and closeness of a trio of sisters, all musically gifted and confident in their music. There’s a mix of joy, pain and enough emotional residue that pulls together the album that transports you from an intimate moment in your bedroom to a being at the center of our vast daily lives.

LASKA will celebrate the release of the new album in Amsterdam at Saint Paul on June 3 with local favorites Dad Bod and Bathtub Cig. (tickets here) They then embark on a tour of the East and West coasts. Asking them what excites them about a tour, Hannah jokes,

“It’s like a giant adventure. Every day you wake up a little slow, drink coffee and hit the road. We all share and love finding great places to eat. Mookie remembers cities from the 2019 tour based on where they ate.

Patcher’s Endless Tour
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