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The Hugs / Press

“The Hugs have been occupying their own little corner of the Portland music scene for six years now, cranking out garage pop with an ear for arenas. You could even say it's underappreciated by some. Lead Hug Danny Delegato has forged ahead through personnel changes, kicking out happy pop for sad souls. And they keep getting better. The band's latest LP, Love Led You, Here is jam-packed with exuberant, full-bodied pop with hooks aplenty and a sparkly sheen. It's easily the Hugs' best work to date, and should turn the spotlight on this motley crew in Portland and beyond.”

“Danny Delegato is 18. It has been less than a year since he graduated from Cleveland High School, and next month his band, The Hugs, will embark on a U.S. tour supporting the internationally acclaimed Walkmen. After that, they will be flying to England to meet with possible producers for their debut LP on the formidable 1965 Records, a release that is sure to involve a world tour. For the moment though, Delegato is sitting in his house on Northwest Lovejoy Street, getting ready to play a string of basement shows that may prove to be the band’s last hurrah in an insular Portland scene that they are, regrettably, about to outgrow. The Hugs’ road to their current breakout status traces back several years to when Delegato and his friend Kelly Mckenzie began writing fuzzy pop songs for performance in the dive-iest of Portland clubs. Playing lousy shows to small audiences...”

“[JANGLE GARAGE] “I love the Hugs...They’re kind of like the Libertines but are taking it all from their own direction,” claimed Libertine Carl Barât in a 2007 NME interview. Elements of the garage revival play big parts in both bands’ sounds. But if the Hugs and the Libertines are in the same garage, the Libertines are rebuilding a transmission while the Hugs practice their harmonies in a corner, glass jars of screws keeping time. And oh, what harmonies. The vocals, especially on 2012’s Dirty Gems EP, sound a lot closer to the psych-folk aural rainbows of the Byrds than any garage rockers we know. The reversed guitars only distance them from any garage comparisons. The Hugs became a Portland staple when they were signed to Columbia while students at Cleveland High School, and if anything they’re more legendary now that they’re independent. ”

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