Although I don’t always agree with Jackpot Records’ pricing on LPs, they always amaze me with their great selection of 7”s marked at incredibly reasonable rates. Case in point: Chicago’s resident lo-fi rockers Campfires’s 2009 release on the often-pricey Mexican Summer imprint which I found for less than even what the label was asking for it. No doubt, this was an auto-buy for me as I’ve been jamming the group incessantly for the past month or so.
The A-side is composed of two quick-fire tracks entitled “Stormy Late Fall” and “Rustic Arcadia”. The former, coming in at 78 seconds, is the lengthier of the two and my personal favorite on the 7”. Drawing you in hook-line-and-sinker after a few bars of fuzzed out guitar strums, the track charmingly unfolds when Jeff Wallis enters with his relaxed voice sung over a swirling din of reverb — keeping true to the song’s appellation. The entirely instrumental “Rustic Arcadia” on the other hand jumps forward about two seasons and, if butted up against Real Estate’s “Let’s Rock the Beach”, would make for a killer 1-2 punch on anybody’s chilled-out mixtape. Not to be outdone by its flip side counterpart, the B-side houses the single track “She Was Down” which is 3 minutes of music cut much in the same fashion.
As a whole, the 7” is such a great listen that it makes me regret not buying the group’s latest split-cassette in time before it sold-out. No worries for the recently initiated though, Mexican Summer still has a handful of copies left of their debut which you can snag from their store here. If you need more convincing, check out below the excellent opener “Stormy Late Fall”: