Homesick Beach by Clean Slate Club
By Sophie Minello
Earlier this year, Ohio musician Elek Juhasz found himself in a new house facing a clean slate. His previous bands dabbled in the more punk focused music where his talents with the keyboard, drums, or bass were put to use. However, in this new home, a fresh musical beginning seemed fitting. There, Clean Slate Club was formed. The name was proposed by the band’s keyboardist, Rick, who was also facing a new start after leaving his former band. He’d heard one of Juhasz’s demos and the two of them decided to team up. Then came drummer Jonah and bassist Nick, all friends of each other through their involvement in the local Ohio music community. Though they all work together to conjure up a striking live performance, Juhasz takes it upon himself to write and record the music.
Released on June 1st, Clean Slate Club presented their first EP entitled “Homesick Beach.” It’s impressive to think that Juhasz recorded all the songs in his home studio last winter, since the arrangements sound so clean and organized. The EP songs, in harmony with the EP title, reminds one of a summer vacation. The sounds all join together to make the listener feel like they’re floating on air.
The EP begins with the track, “An Endless Sea.” Juhasz’s voice emphasises the floating feeling with the wispy quality to his vocals and the blissful hums in the background. Juhasz explains the song as a mere message to “go out and go find yourself.” The song fades away, like morning mist on water, leaving the bass and drum sequence repeating before “Get Schooled” echoes in. The album’s carefree sound is carried on through this song, though a different feeling is mixed in. This starry-eyed love song depicts how a lover is keeping away Juhasz’s blues. He sings, “But when I’m down, she picks me up and around / And when I drown, she drinks the water out.”
The next track, “Homesick Beach,” stirs images of blue water and stretching sun rays. Juhasz has the ability to conjure up images through his melodies and instrument arrangements in a skillful way. If you tried closing your eyes while listening to this third track, you might be able to picture palm trees, sand, a beach chair, the waves. Don’t let the sounds fool you, however, because the song isn’t as sunny as it sounds. It’s about a period of time where Juhasz wasn’t feeling too good. He describes the song as a “...light, jazzy song about being homesick.”
Clean Slate Club closes off the EP with “I Don’t Need A Thing,” which showcases a different set of feelings than the serenity that the earlier tracks possessed. Though holding the same summer-y vibes, this track moves at a faster pace. It’s more of a song you can bop your head to, basking in its chaotic calm. The finale of this song plays you out as the end credits roll, and it’s evident how Clean Slate Club are a band to keep an eye on.