Press Play: Tennis

The band Tennis has one of the most romantic love stories in indie rock. Tennis is composed of husband and wife duo Alaina Moore and Patrick Riley. After finishing college in Colorado, the couple pawned all of their possessions, bought a sailboat and embarked on a journey along the Eastern Seaboard.  After reaching land, they manifested their nautical experiences into songs on their debut album Cape Dory. The debut effort is full of sun-soaked tracks that emphasize the essential romance of adventure.

Six years after Cape Dory, the couple set sail again for their fourth album Yours Conditionally. They traveled from San Diego into the Sea of Cortez on Mexico’s coast– sleeping in turns, with little to no cell service or contact with those ashore. Moore and Riley continued channeling the warmth of 70s retro pop among effortlessly expressed and affecting melodies. On the buoyant “My Emotions Are Blinding”, the duo dips into vintage soul with an energetic bassline and jumpy organ chords. Overall, Yours Conditionally is a pleasant rumination on relationships and hardships that will charm those who adore old-school pop.

Today, Tennis released their latest album Swimmer. The fifth effort is a collection of romantic, cinematic dream pop songs. The opening track “I’ll Haunt You” is classic Tennis with addictive grooves, piano-centric instrumentals and Moore’s soft voice gracefully harmonizing with itself. “Need Your Love” is a standout track with staccato beats and thumping piano chords. The song also features multiple tempo shifts, mirroring the song’s thematic complexity. Swimmer is another example of how Tennis can build a solid album out of rewarding melodies and juxtaposition of densely layered music with sparse instrumentals.