Meet Whirr, Oakland's Promising New Punk-Shoegaze Merchants

Music genre revivals have the innate ability to polarize listeners: they're easily written off as pastiche or unoriginal, but yet can reinvent idioms by adding new, unexpected layers or constructs. Whirr, which identifies as a five-piece punk band from Oakland, plays music that could be mistaken for '90s college radio shoegaze, except that the band formed just a few years ago in Modesto. Its members are friends who listen to a lot of '80s and '90s alternative while on the road. They layer their songs with three guitars' worth of thick electric fuzz, but slower tempos tend to keep the vibe introspective. Unaggressive, warm melodies and female vocals ride over the top of it all. Whirr released its first full-length, Pipe Dreams, last year on the Tee Pee label, and has since toured the U.S. and Europe. We spoke with bassist Nick Bassett ahead of the band's show at Bottom of the Hill this Wednesday, Aug. 28.

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