Live Review: Peyote Ugly

 Sunset Tavern Seattle, WA 

Contact: [email protected] 

Web: peyoteulgy.com 

Players: Brennan Moring, synth, vocals; Elliot Preston, guitar, vocals; Sebastian Brown Glad, bass, vocals; Connor Johnson, drums 

Material: Seattle’s Peyote Ugly is a dreamy psyche-wave quartet that fuses shimmery vocals, spacy synths, and large, melodic guitar riffs with a smidge of indie-pop. Their musical stylings collide at a sweet spot of art rock where the proto-prog-psychedelia vertices of Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb” and Blue Oyster Cult’s “The Reaper” (without the cowbell) meet the modern hallucinatory harmonics of Tame Impala’s “The Less I Know the Better” and King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard’s “Slow Jam 1.” Peyote’s expansive soundscapes are well thought out and supported by rich lyrics that explore storylines with abstract, metaphysical themes. 

Musicianship: Peyote Ugly balances their ethereal music with power-driven precision. The band’s instrumentation is excellent. Brennan Moring’s soaring synths and Elliott Preston’s ambient guitar riffs create sharply crafted serene musical scenes. Moring and Preston’s lofty psych-rock melodies flow organically but are grounded by Sebastian Brown Glad’s deep basslines and Connor Johnson’s intricate drumming techniques. Brennan, Elliott, and Sebastian also take turns with vocal duties (lead and backing) and skillfully place their low to high ambient timbres so that each voice remains distinct and clear in the live mix. 

Performance: Peyote Ugly stepped up to the Sunset Tavern stage to perform as part of a benefit show for breast cancer awareness. After taking a moment to thank their audience for supporting an important cause, the four-piece drifted into the echoey, flanged-out “Wormwood” from their 2022 release Double Vision. Peyote’s intangible connection with one another as well as the crowd was apparent as they moved further into their set with a few more consciousness-expanding songs from Double Vision, the dark airy beauty of “Mutiny” and the solid diaphanous sounds of “Tea Leaves.” Peyote Ugly ended their show with another round of fanciful sounds, the soul-stirring “Myopia” and the hypnotic “Palo Santo.” 

Summary: Peyote Ugly is a dazzling psychedelic-leaning band with a subtle yet powerful stage presence that sneaks up to encapsulate concertgoers in their trippy world filled with transcendental tales. The four-piece have an effortless ability to pull forth the best elements of experimental rock and present them with an energetic, contemporary slant. Their passion for creating mind-expanding music is noticeable when they are on stage, a formidable act with huge promise. Check out Peyote Ugly playing shows in the Pacific Northwest and look for new music soon!