Although the rising Sacramento-based trio Best Move — Kris Anaya, Joseph Davancens and Fernando Olivia — formed in 2019, the band can trace some of its origins over the better part of the past decade: the band’s primary songwriters Anaya and Davancens have played a variety of different music under various banners.
Early on, Kris Anaya developed a reputation for his penchant for crafting wry, offbeat, guitar-based folk, and for following his muse down whatever sonic path it might take him. Davancens earned graduate degrees in avant garde composition and jazz double bass. Interestingly, Best Move was born from Anaya and Davancens’ desire to return to their natural inclinations for organic instrumentation and earnest songwriting, with the project drawing from the work of Randy Newman, Van Dyke Parks, Brian Wilson and Harry Nilsson and film and TV scores — in particular, the films of Michel Gondry, Sofia Coppola and Wes Anderson. The end result is a sound that Anaya calls a “thank you to the past” while being decidedly modern.
Clocking in at a little over 4.30, the slow-burning “Forgotten Bloom,” Best Move’s debut single possesses a quirky, cinematic soundtrack vibe while drawing from 60s and 70s AM Radio rock, thanks to a lush arrangement of strummed guitar, twinkling Rhodes, atmospheric synths, shimmering bursts of pedal steel, a steady backbeat and razor sharp hooks. While sonically bearing a subtle resemblance to Young Narrator in the Breakers-era Pavo Pavo, “Forgotten Bloom” manages to be carefully sculpted yet rooted in wry yet lived-in lyricism and songwriting.