Tender Age’s particular brand of noise-infused pop music feels like being pulled into an automatic car wash, but instead of hot multi-colored foam, it’s guitars coating you, and after being blown dry you emerge from the tunnel shimmering and glossy. The music can feel as euphoric at times as it does dark and complicated at others. Indeed, balancing contradictions is what the band does best. They juxtapose beauty with dissonance, punctuate accessible melodies with dense noise freakouts, and write cryptic vocals that come across deeply personal while being vague enough to be universally relatable. Fans of Sonic Youth, The Breeders, and Black Tambourine will appreciate common threads they love about those bands weaving throughout Tender Age’s music, but with a refreshing lack of genre clichés or tribute band vibes.
Tender Age recorded Becoming Real Forever themselves using a 16-track tape machine in a cabin they transformed into a makeshift all-analog recording studio on the Oregon coast over two weeks in the Summer of 2017. They snaked mic cables through heating vents in the wood paneling and along the worn shag carpet under doors, tracking everything live in the living room as tourists walked by gawking through a huge picture window, bewildered by the racket emanating from within. It doesn’t sound like a “beach” album, but it’s deeply connected to the sunny, dreary Oregon coast and to the experiences the band had sharing that weird little cabin with each
other and the friends who visited them.
The Portland, Oregon five piece have released a pair of 7” singles and a 12″ EP since the band first formed in 2013. Since a lineup change in 2017 brought Olives to the band, the group has experienced a new level of cohesion and a wave of productivity that resulted in Becoming Real Forever, the band’s first full length release.
TENDER AGE IS:
Tauna Leonardo – Guitar & Vocals
Bryan Robertson – Bass
Elaina Tardif – Guitar & Vocals
Christopher Klarer – Guitar
Olives – Drums
Parts of tracks 05, 06, & 07 recorded by
Nalin Silva at Revolver Studios, including
drums played by Nick Ferrucci.
Everything else wirtten, performed, and
recorded by Tender Age.
Mixed by Josiah Mazzaschi at The Cave
Mastered by Gus Elg at Sky Onion.
The Breeders, Sonic Youth, Black Tambourine, Throwing Muses.