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"Because of the wide variety we have from song to song, it's hard to say that they're derivative of just one thing," says Allegra. Garcia agrees, noting that it's only after a drum track is laid down that he realizes the debt the song owes to history. "But that's just the nature of influence and inspiration."
Allegra's defense of eclectic inspiration holds water when you consider the expanse of the band's influences. While Brasil is obviously a fan of the Summer of Love, he also cites a variety of other interests, from jazz musicians like Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington to K Records bands like Beat Happening. You can hear the indie rock of Beach House or Rilo Kiley in Jamie Bryant's keyboard, and many of Allegra's contributions veer closer to late-'80s shoegaze than to psychedelic pop. And guitarist Renninger embraces the decade in rock that immediately followed the hippies.
"The majority of all the music I listen to comes from the '70s," notes Renninger, who landed the gig in Fingers after playing in a David Bowie cover band with Brasil — performing as the cracked actor himself. "You've got Black Sabbath, Iggy Pop, Bowie, Funkadelic, and then punk came around with Richard Hell and Gang of Four. I'm more interested in artsy expressions of the guitar — more interesting than technical."
Fingers of the Sun has continued to find inspiration through restriction with its latest release, Sleepy EP. A collection of five songs all thematically and sonically rooted in the subject of sleep, the record contains the same strength and textural beauty as the band's previous release — though with a considerable absence of the hooks and energy that made Fingers such a captivating live act. "We wanted to break out of trying to play up-tempo, fast, happy songs to get people dancing and paying attention to you," Brasil explains.
Still, there's a strong psychedelic element throughout the songs, particularly the disorienting, 27-minute space jam "Careful With Those Sleeping Pills, Percy," a song that will go a long way toward gaining the band credibility with the noise enthusiasts who dismissed Fingers as just another overly cutesy, derivative indie-rock band.
Not that the band minds being called derivative.