Mike Sniper’s musical career has been one of mistaken identity and mystery, though he never meant for it to happen in that way. Sniper released several EPs and singles through reputable labels like Hozac, Sacred Bones, and Woodist while creating his own label Captured Tracks. Somehow this constant release of music gave people the impression Sniper was someone he was not. “The anonymous thing happened in the very beginning because I didn’t even have a backing band to play shows with,” explains Sniper. “It led to some ridiculous rumors-that I wear a mask onstage, that I’m Stephen Malkmus…funny stuff.”
Sniper has now created his own identity through Captured Tracks and his project Blank Dogs. Blank Dogs’ 2008 limited vinyl pressing On Two Sides caused a huge buzz when the Fader blog and 20jazzfunkgreats got a hold of it and gave it rave reviews. As Captured Tracks grew and Blank Dogs’ music became more well known on the blog circuit, Sniper’s sound grew from it’s lo-fi, simplistic roots into an ocean of influences tied together with loud guitars and bright synths. Land and Fixed is the latest chapter in Blank Dogs’ career. Sniper has turned his project into a full-fledged band and the album’s first single “Northern Islands” represents the vision he always had for Blank Dogs. You can hear everything on it from sultry beach pop to Joy Division to classic indie rock. Take a listen to “Northern Islands” below. Land and Fixed comes out October 12 on Captured Tracks.