Dynasty Four is a five-piece indie rock band out of Toronto, just recently back together. Originally founded in 2012, their debut album titled Anachronisms came out in 2015 but the band members parted ways shortly thereafter. Weirdly, the pandemic happened to bring all the players back to Toronto where they reunited for this three-song EP titled Revivals. They describe themselves as having a “fun-first approach to reviving garage rock for the ages” and hope this EP is just the first step to more releases and stage performances.
The band describe their songs as “hooky, high-energy ear worms that deftly blend pop, punk, surf and garage rock with dynamic lyrics and an electric live presence. Revivals is a rollicking three-song EP brimming with garage guitars and pop punk sing-alongs. These are the songs that got our band back together.” The band also admits this set began as a collection of demos on SoundCloud, “but they turned out so well, we had to share.”
Now weirdly - despite all this talk about a band “revival” - most of the players are not even listed! Dynasty Four is certainly not the only band I’ve reviewed that does this, but I never understand why some bands don’t list performer names. From Instagram snooping I gather that Nikkole Couture (lead vocals/guitar) and her husband Andrew (guitar) are the leaders, backed by Fabio Cappucio (bass?), Christi Konto (keys) and Dirty Rick (drums). Recording took place at Nikkole’s home studio using Logic, and they mention that Andrew is “one of the best pop-rock producers in the biz. “
The band calls the opening “Champions of Breakfast” a “pure punk call to arms.” It’s certainly anthemic, with its triple-time beat and repeated chorus of “We’re gonna win!” The vocals sound female in the hardcore Patti Smith tradition, with the choruses always at a hair’s breadth of drifting out of tune. A short but bracing trip.
“For The Cats” is about “keeping it together for the ones who need you.” Here I’ll note that the guitar arrangement is basically a two-tracked streamlined fuzz attack, with the bass very much in the pocket. Really love Nikkole’s lead vocals here, though the backing choruses are again right on the verge of disharmony (which may be the point!).
“Lord of Feuds” has the most interesting two-guitar arrangements, with the second axe playing harmonically higher voicings or following along with the root note of each chord. Way in back I can hear a synth that has hopped aboard. Nikkole’s vocals remind me of early punk Debbie Harry, and the band’s energy can’t be faulted. They call this song “a snotty tribute to the selfish and self-centered, the unaffected and aloof we find so irresistible.”
As mentioned, this is a very short EP that started out as song demos. All three tracks together are barely longer than a standard song, but the mechanics and strengths all seem to be in place for some great music in the future.
All Except Fear is an artist, composer, musician and sound designer from the UK. He has been steadily crafting an original sound that expertly combines a deep and cinematic atmosphere, emotional reflection and forward-thinking production. You can hear this on his recent release Broken Edges.
The artist mentions “The Sound I was going for is otherworldly, I am a huge soundtrack fan and always want to create a Trilogy of Sci-fi sounds/music.” That’s definitely the feeling I was getting when listening to the compositions.
The EP is relatively short for this type of music that comes to about an eleven- minute time length. That being said, it was enough to give me an impression of what the artist is capable of.
The EP starts with “Breakdown” which begins with an ominous feeling. There are multiple long pads intersecting with each other and what sounds like some sort of being occasionally breathing. I was imagining a starship arriving on a mysterious planet not exactly sure what to expect. There’s a strong sense of tension throughout which sort of ends within the last couple of seconds in the composition almost as if you are letting go into space.
“Remove the System” is a piano led song but still contains a lot of the same aesthetics as the previous songs. The composition sounds huge and epic especially as it progresses. It’s very pensive and the sense of tension and loneliness in the song is haunting yet beautiful. A little before the three-minute mark light beams shatter the atmosphere as some sort of cosmic event unfolds.
“No Defence” starts with an ambient cloud of textures and tones. There’s no surface to land on here. It’s misty and ephemeral as it morphs and evolves. The song has crescendos but they are unique. It’s around the three-minute mark that the more ominous low end combines with the misty and airy high end sounds.
The music is unequivocally ripe for sci-fi movies. On that note, even without any visual, I found this music does contain a lot of imagery that will pop up in your mind’s eye. Recommended.
For Travis Charles Hagan, his experiences with his daughter, as well as teaching middle school, in Leander, TX, bleeds into his musical side project entitled Painter Fingers. Incorporating an indie folk and chamber folk sound reminiscent of Elliott Smith and Sufjan Stevens within his songwriting, Hagan describes himself as a “lifelong music maker,” and you can tell that he takes music very seriously. Hagan’s uncanny ability to craft meaningful lyrical messages sung over acoustic backing translates to six (seven if you count his cover of “Michael (Row the Boat Ashore)”) brand new tracks as part of his newest EP, How Summer Flies.
Without a doubt, Hagan is the main creative force behind Painter Fingers, but the EP would never have been possible without the help of some remote collaborations. While it was still recorded and mixed on Mixcraft 9 Pro Studio, four other people from around the world offered their talents: cellist Polina Faustova (Ukraine), trombonist Michael Fortunato (Italy), flutist Hanna Danets (also Ukraine) and fiddle player Rita Torrens (Turkey). These international collaborations are a perfect fit for How Summer Flies, since its content revolves around a push for societal change.
Said content begins with “World’s Best Army.” “I keep coming back / To what’s haunting me,” Hagan croons over a cleanly produced acoustic guitar. There are far too many potent lines here as well as across the EP that will really resonate with people, but generally speaking, this opener’s otherwise carefree tone is juxtaposed with serious lyrics addressing gun violence. There’s also a harmonica solo in it, too, for good measure. In contrast to the first track’s minimalism is “Waiting To Make Something Happen.” Featuring more of a full band approach definitely amplifies Hagan’s frustrations towards the state of the world.
“I Only Laugh” is an elegiac moment that once again discusses the issue of gun violence over plucked acoustics and cello notes. One particular line, “We can’t count the deaths / Of children / If we are not allowed / To blame the gun,” stood out to me as a crucial part of How Summer Flies’ narrative. It’s an interesting look into why we can’t just talk about effects and not their causes, which ultimately links back to mass shootings. If there’s one critique that I have for Painter Fingers, it’s that Hagan tends to repeat his points on political matters. Luckily, we get a break from talking about tragedy with “It Makes Her Happy,” shifting the focus to his daughter instead. The song may not offer a hook as strong as the first two cuts, but its introspection is genuinely sweet, and the trombones are welcome attachments, sonically. Additionally, Hagan states that “Umbrella Song,” is another song inspired by his daughter, Lucy.
Last of all is How Summer Flies’ fiddle-heavy title track. With this one being the sole number to crack the five-minute mark, I expected this to tie everything together with a neat little bow. Those expectations were certainly met, although Hagan’s juxtaposition of people’s warm perception of time with the cold reality that tomorrow, someone’s life could be snatched away “by some right-wing insurrectionist” is anything but neat. It’s very messy, which also explains its sudden expletives, and that messiness gives Painter Fingers’ latest EP even more strength. As Mr. Hagan says himself before the final part of the song, “I know you swear by these documents / Though they were written when / The government owned slaves / I only ask, what to you is more important? / Your right to own / A killing machine / Or your brother’s right to breathe?” That message is repeated several times throughout How Summer Flies, which makes it much more than just your standard indie folk EP. Highly recommended.
Born in Jakarta, Indonesia, Retini was raised in Queens, NY before going on to settle permanently in Bristol, UK. From early on, music has captured her. Having spent much of her adult life either at the piano or guitar, the artist is now more than happy to share her debut album Hear me now to the world. Once you hit play, you will immediately get the sense that Retini wears her influences on her sleeve. Growing up in New York in the ‘70s, she listened to a wide range of folk music that included Joni Mitchell, Judy Collins, Joan Baez, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Carol King, Laura Nyro as well as Bob Dylan, James Taylor, Jim Croce, Gordon Lightfoot, Simon & Garfunkel and more. In more recent years, Retini became enraptured by jazz sounds and all the great jazz artists both past and present such as Ella Fitzgerald, Billy Holiday, Sara Vaughan and incredible musicians like John Coltrane and Miles Davis just to name some. You can hear these artists in her sound. But don’t me wrong, Retini also adds something distinctively her own to these folk/acoustic takes. Her warm vocals and up-close-and-personal performances engulf audiences in a welcoming listening experience. At ten tracks, there’s tons to appreciate here.
Hear me now begins with “Streets of Paris,” where pensive strumming from the acoustic guitar comes in as well as Retini’s warm vocals. The vibe of this track was very introspective and relaxing all at once. The layers of electric and acoustic guitar made for a great sound. The mellow vibe of this track reminded me of what I would hear in a coffee shop environment. Synthetic strings, some lively percussion and piano reels us in for a sizzling jazz vibe on “Tu Es Libre.” Here Retini sings entirely in French. I was immediately drawn to the cool blend of flavors and sounds. On the title track “Hear Me Now,” some meandering piano melody arrives alongside some atmospheric synths. On this piano ballad, Retini’s emotive vocals take flight for a soaring sound. The instruments come together for an ambient sound.
Some finger-picking on the guitar adds a bluesy riff to the sounds on “C’est L’amour.” Some piano also lights up the vibes. Next, Retini’s croons in French on this moving piano ballad. Strumming on the guitar reels in a warm acoustic vibe right away. Next, Retini’s folksy vocal harmonies carry on the sounds. Here, it really seems like Retini is wearing her heart on her sleeve as she throws herself into the music, singing in a very confessional vein. More piano arrives here for a lounge vibe on “My Town.” Retini’s vocals come across with a powerful and enigmatic quality. She includes tons of feeling here as her vocals create a moving vibe. I was reminded of Adele’s “Hometown Glory.”
“Milo’s Song” is another in the piano ballad vein. The tune is meandering here. As the sound builds, Retini’s vocals arrive and this track has a very lullaby vibe. It definitely feels like she’s singing to a little child as the soft and soothing vibes grabs hold of listeners. On “Believe In Love,” piano, drums and guitars arrive for a jaunty and rollicking rock sound. Add in Retini’s catchy and upbeat vocals and you get a fantastic performance that was a pleasure to listen to. More moody piano comes in for a riveting vibe on “Remember You.” Some synths also enter for an atmospheric sound. Retini sings with high-tail emotion. She reels you in with her moving vocal harmonies. This seemed to be a fitting way for the artist to close the album.
The sound on this record is filled with pensive guitar and piano melodies and emotive vocals. There’s no doubt about it, upon first listen, you’ll immediately get the sense that Retini’s singer/songwriter vibe is the type of music that you’d usually find at a coffee shop or open mic night. Her folksy acoustic music has just the right amount of intimacy and warmth that will immediately make you feel like she’s performing these songs right in front of you. Moving and haunting all at once, this is a good intro to Retini’s sound and I definitely look forward to hearing more soon!
Protea’s self-titled debut release Protea is the work of three talented musicians — Kelly Staten (vocals/bass/piano), Josh Mitchell (vocals/guitar/piano) and Jonny Tornga (drums/electronics). It’s clear that everybody working on this project is a multi-talented creative because they all have more than one role to play. That excites me before I’ve even heard the project. And let me tell you that the music itself does not disappoint. “be it.” is the ethereal opener to this unique album. Tornga lays down a booming drum beat and Mitchell delicately plays a moody, twangy guitar rhythm. Staten’s vocals are forlorn and utterly transfixing. The synths blend perfectly with her stunningly-elongated notes in the choruses, as she sings that, “I know it’s beautiful / Why can’t I see it? / I know it’s beautiful / Why can’t I be it?” While these lyrics are obscure and, I’m sure, deeply personal, something about the way they’re sung makes them feel completely relatable.
The upbeat, peppy nature of the second track was totally out of left field, but I’m always a fan of the unexpected when listening to a lengthy record. “BurnYouDeep” is driven by huge power chords and Staten’s flexible and endlessly-versatile voice. She and Mitchell harmonize with impeccable precision on the choruses. I’m so impressed by the musical prowess of every band member. I can’t get enough of the gloomy electric guitar solo towards the end of the song. Fantastic work.
“Find It In Yourself” initially puts Mitchell at the forefront of the track, vocally, and this gives the track a bit of a pop-punk flair; something about his singing style reminds me of ‘90s/‘00s bands like Green Day and Blink-182. Even though the chugging guitar and punchy drumming remains the same throughout, the vibe of the song changes whenever Staten sings. It creates a truly interesting dynamic. Things take a more mellow turn on “Hungry Liar.” Tornga brings out the shakers on this one, which is driven by a very slow beat and drawn-out, effects-heavy electric guitar strums. Staten’s singing is, as ever, utterly sublime. She and Mitchell harmonize beautifully on the choruses.
“Reach” dials down the energy even farther, offering slower strums and even gentler drumming. But this intro is deceptive because the choruses are driven by electrifying power chords with the gain dialed back up to 10. They really smash the loud-quiet dynamic between the verses and choruses. But “Won’t Let You Down” might be the softest song on the record, as Protea dives into full-blown ballad territory. The chord progression is lovely, but it’s the vocal duet between Staten and Mitchell that truly glued this song together. Gorgeous. Of course, the uppercase on “DOLORES” gave me a hint that this trio wasn’t done with rock. Brutal drumming, gargantuan electric power chords and powerful singing merge to create a massive rock anthem; there’s a brilliant solo halfway through the song.
“Red Pine” maintains the boisterous vibe of the previous track, offering more chugging guitars and explosive choruses. There’s a satisfyingly dissonant quality to the rhythm on this track; Staten’s vocals complement it wonderfully, but I really have to give Mitchell a special shout-out for his guitar-work on this one. Top marks. And Tornga’s ferocious, staccato drumming, towards the end of the track, really gave it the energy it needed. This leads into “All For One,” which is a tamer song with mesmerizingly-complex guitar arpeggios and drum-work. Staten delivers with an amazing vocal performance, once again.
“$eeds” is driven by my favorite guitar passage on the album. Mitchell has found a breathtakingly good tone for his guitar here. That, combined with the high-fretted riff he plays, creates a real ear-worm of a song. The solo towards the end of the song is just mind-bending, though. It gives me real Jack White vibes. Unbridled, relentless, beautiful carnage. And the album closes on the tender note of “i’ll try.” which seems to be an answer to the opener. It certainly ends on a similar note to the intro, offering a gorgeous guitar rhythm, slow beat and wonderful harmonies from Staten. The perfect end to this eclectic collection of songs.
Tall Timbers II is the second record from the New Orleans, Louisiana/Richmond, Virginia trio, Tall Timbers. The record was written over the course of a year and then recorded mostly in one day at a cabin along the James River in Virginia. The band’s self-titled debut Tall Timbers was reviewed on Pitch Perfect. And with their second album Tall Timbers II, the trio brings to listeners their unique blend of indie folk and singer/songwriter influences, along with live field recordings, hushed instrumentation and soft vocals - in the world of artists like Elliott Smith, Bon Iver, Matt Pond PA and Sufjan Stevens. I think you’ll find Tall Timbers’ music to be lush, full of warm sounds and vibes.
The opening track “Ghost Bird” is a short tune (in fact most of the band’s songs are pretty short). Here, vocals are full and inviting, accompanied by an acoustic guitar, an ethereal sounding piano and droning organ in the background. “Ponderosa” has a sad western movie mystique to it, but it also reminded me of the movie Into the Wild. “Kingmaker II” has the band playing an electric guitar, very softly and an even softer played bass. The vocal harmonies are simply gorgeous on this track. “Moderation” engulfs the ears with echoing vocals singing - “I don’t think I’ll ever get by” with some added trippy key/synth effects - in just under a minute. “Daisy” feels like a love song, or a love letter written to a special someone by the same name. This tune sounds like it was hardly played or sung - the band gets super chill, super quiet here. Beautiful number for sure. “North Treeline” has got a cool mix of organ and piano, acoustic and a rugged, electric guitar sound. The rhythm has a bounce to it as well - one of the band’s faster played songs, you could say.
“Medication” has a different feel to it. It’s more… old school in some ways, creepy, but in a good way? Sad and melancholic all in one, and the quiet, rolling steam in the background adds mystery here. In my view, I think it’s sounds more like something off of a soundtrack album, like some murder mystery film or Twin Peaks episode. Anyway, I liked this track a lot and it shows a different side to the band. “Paper Rivers” features a faster rhythm on the acoustic and more organ presence. It kind of sounds like there’s almost two organ/keyboards playing, like one sounds more “flute-ish” while another one has a lower tone to it. Overall, this track sounded happy to me. The next tune “Meditation” also features the band having a different sound and style. I would say they have a more ambient/soundscape thing going on here.
“We’re gonna go to outer space” declares a little persons’ voice in this instrument only song. The band’s last track “Wax and Wane” is very stripped down - only a vocal and acoustic to start and then, more vocal harmonies on the chorus part of the song. Another gently played, softly sung tune, well, until the band brings in a distorted guitar and a droning keyboard sound towards the end.
Overall, it you’re looking for something soft, chilled out and similar to the other artists mentioned earlier, Tall Timbers has got you covered.
Marty Finkel has been steadily releasing music under his own name since 2005. Finkel mentions “As my music became more polished I realized I didn't have a place to put my love for bands like The Microphones, Elliott Smith and Tyrannosaurus Rex. Thus Spinning Swords was born.” Finkel recently released All We Thought Was Right which is a ten-song album.
Finkel also mentions that the album revolves around depression, faith and politics. The music does have similarities to The Microphones in terms of the production. There’s a mix of genres here like folk, singer/songwriter and like- minded styles.
Finkel begins with “Where Have All The Flowers Gone, Tom Dooley?” and revolves around bass, guitars, drums and vocals. I liked the vocal delivery tight off the bat. The instrumentation sounds organic. It’s a well written song with a sense of mystery to it. The chorus is catchy and I was on board with hearing where the album would go.
Next up is “Had a Day” which is really catchy. The feeling is similar when I listen to bands like Wilco. There’s a warm melancholy which passes over you but feels comforting. The instrumentation sounds great and is relatively straightforward putting the vocal upfront in the mix.
“Something To Say” goes a little more into a sense of melancholy. It revolves around strummed chords, bass and drums. The vocals really shine here. Finkel’s delivery is on point. It never feels too “woe is me” and hits a nice tone that is relatable and easy to appreciate.
The Wilco vibes came back strong with “Lost Within the Sound.” The songs contain a warm blend of instrumentation and I thought this was another accessible song. I was quickly realizing how good of a songwriter Finkel is.
As the album progressed I was impressed with the consistency of the songs. The somber “Den of the Lion” flows into “Whistles and Bells” which felt like two songs that went together. “Coming To an End” might be the highlight. It’s just a great song with an irresistible repeat worthy quality and such a good chorus. “Rest Your Head,” “How’d My World Catch On Fire Again” and the nostalgic “When I Was Younger” continue to create a strong foundation for Finkel. The closer “When I Was Younger” was exceptional.
This is a cohesive album. I recommended listening to from beginning to end. There’s nothing too fancy in terms of the production and that’s some of the charm. In my opinion Finkel hit it out of the park with this release. Recommended.
Brand-new alt rock duo Francis Retrognome formed in early 2022. Consisting of singer/lead guitarist Tom Mahar and bassist Cayla Dean, their cast also includes a rotating group of very talented drummers who light up their sound with fast and riveting takes. The band’s sound on their latest album A Place For Your Ghosts To Dance is a blend of grunge and alt rock that often includes jaunty beats and upbeat rhythms. The mix of heavy and infectious vibes ends up creating something special that a lot of us will be coming back to again and again. Mahar’s energized vocal performances together with his expert musicianship on the guitar and Dean’s funk-heavy bass lines makes for a memorable delivery. Like the intro says ‘fasten your seatbelts’ – you’re definitely in for a ride!
After a spoken word performance that introduces the band, the track starts off with “Stay Out Of My Way,” where some bass lines enter the spotlight as the sound grows into a heavy grunge feel. The vibe sounded a lot like alt bands to come out of the ‘90s. Mahar imbues tons of feeling into his vocals. The rollicking guitar riffs also made this song. Loving the energy the band exhibits here. Some sparse guitar riffs come in alongside some percussion. Mahar attaches a ton of attitude and sass to this Bossa nova track. I enjoyed the jaunty rhythms and dreamy vibes. It made for a great sound. More rumbling bass lines arrive at the start of “A Mutinous Look.” Next, more simmering instrumentals come in. This song had a dark take to it as Mahar’s edgy vocals set the stage for a heavier vibe.
Some sparse guitars enter the sounds on “The Heave In My Heart.” Mahar’s vocals are highlighted here as drumming beats come in support. The sound is sprawling and meandering as it takes its time in unfolding. Next, more shimming instrumentals arrive for a melodic and vibrant sound. More bass lines come in as Mahar’s vocals add a gritty take to “A Gift.” The vibes were heavier here and I was instantly reminded of Nirvana. There was a dash of bitterness in the execution of the vocals that I thought went on to add a nice touch to the lyrics. Some funky bass lines assuredly arrest listeners on “Inside Voice.” I was getting some smoky blues in the mix. Next, the sauntering music comes in for a slow burning feel. I was loving the attitude that Mahar brings to this track. It made for a great listen.
On “Maybe Someday,” some guitars highlight the start of this track with a warm acoustic vibe. The band shows a different side to their music-making here. There’s a touch of nostalgia and sentimentalism on this song that makes for a resounding vibe. On “Moon Dance,” some melodic guitars and sizzling percussion lights up the sounds here for a very Bossa nova approach. The catchy and jaunty tunes made for a romantic and alluring vibe. Some wind instruments come through alongside the sounds of rain falling outside on “666 The End.” Next, some guitars sidle in supported by a drumming beat. This felt like a slow burn to my ears as the rock sounds takes its time in evolving. Next, the momentum builds for a heavy rock vibe with bass lines reeling you in. The instrumentals each take their turn in being spotlighted as Mahar’s reverb-drenched vocals draw you in closer to the music. The instrumentals take a sprawling approach as the band members enter an enthused jam session.
Francis Retrognome brings to the table their unique blend of grunge and alternative rock. Bursting at the seams with high-tail energy, the band’s chemistry and rapport on these tracks reels in a sense of deep collaboration. These aren’t just professional musicians but close friends who are willing to show us a good time as they jam out on these riveting sessions. Jam-packed from beginning to end with the band’s enthusiasm and passion for music, I loved every moment of this record and would definitely love to see more soon!
BODICE hails from Guelph, ON, Canada and is a two-piece band that consists of Dani Heidebrecht (bass) and Olexa Brisson (drums). With their first self-titled release BODICE EP, the band takes the grunge, garage rock and punk genres and adds tons of distortion, reverb and a highly raw factor. What you get is a very distinctive live sound and this EP is a huge indicator to what they will sound like in-person. Fuzz is pretty much utilized as a separate instrument and you can see it in the majority of the tracks. Heavy reverb, moving vocals and just enough momentum to keep you coming back for more, BODICE is our first look into what the group is all about and what an intro it is.
Bodice opens up with “Uh Huh,” where bass and drums come in alongside a wave of reverb. The female lead vocals carry with it immense emotion. There was a rawness to this track that couldn’t be missed. I was getting some grunge, garage rock and punk as well as some indie. Synths, a drumming beat and bass arrive for a dream-like sound at first on “Stowaway.” Next, the pace picks up for a rollicking and energized feel. The lyrics are shouted out in gusto. It made for a great listening experience. On “Low Expectations,” sizzling drums enter for a revved feel. Next, the female lead vocals carry with it tons of attitude and sass as this gritty grunge track takes traction. The sound was here and I also enjoyed the jaunty rhythms and happening vibe.
On “New Obsession,” more bass lines arrive for a dark and gritty sound. Next, the lead female vocals come through for an enthused punk rock sound. The band throws everything they have into this song and there’s tons to appreciate here. Powerful bass lines and demented drums enter on “Landfill.” The fuzz factor is on high here. With a metal-inspired twist, this track comes in filled with a dark and gritty vibe. There was a more ominous take to this song that I thought was a moving display of the band’s sound.
It very much feels like the band is a mere six feet away from you, filling your ear drums with their huge rock sound on this record. While it’s just Heidebrecht and Brisson, the band is able to fill the space of these tracks with larger-than-life riffs, rumbling bass lines and expressive vocals in the punk rock vein. Within these five songs, the band manages to grab your attention right away. This was a solid start from the band and I look forward to seeing more good things from them soon.
Kelsey Mines is an artist and bassist from Seattle, WA, who recently released To Actually Create Everywhere. Mines has an impressive background in music and tours nationally and internationally with groups including ings, NYGASP and the Hollywood Concert Orchestra. Mines mentions “music itself is an experiential manifestation of what it means to create everywhere, uninhibited, through joyful expression free from expectations.”
To Actually Create Everywhere contains three songs which average to around fifteen minutes in length. I will say off the bat these are experimental songs. If you are looking for songs that have catchy hooks and a fun beat to dance to this will not be for you. On the other hand if you are looking for something a little more challenging this might be your cup of tea.
The first song is called “Introduction” and it starts with what sounds like an upright bass. It didn’t take me long to appreciate the technical skills of Mines. The recordings felt raw and intimate and I could even hear breathing noises. There’s a cascade of notes and transitions. A little after the four-minute mark you get what I would call vocal expressions. There aren’t any lyrics and something about the vocal expressions did feel spontaneous. I’m not sure if it was improvised but that was the feeling I was getting. Around the seven-minute mark the vocal expressions sounded pretty close to a variant of yodeling The song goes in different directions but stays minimalistic.
“Movement I” contains a lot more instrumentation and feels more cinematic to me. I loved how the song uses space to create a sense of tension. The horns sounded fantastic here which are surrounded by percussion. There’s a lot of different emotions in this song to my ear. I was feeling some melancholy and also a sense I was trying to figure something out. There’s some solo poetic spoken word about halfway through the song before the instrumentation comes back in. I enjoyed the somewhat disparate sounding parts and how they came together. The song becomes very minimalistic towards the end and still as if it could pick up the slightest sound.
“Movement II” was my favorite piece of music. The emotions felt a little more centered and gave me a similar feeling I get when listening to Sigur Rós. There’s some beautiful moments here which cover you in a sense of solace. Similar to the previous song there’s spoken word. There’s also some more playful moments in this song. I liked the kinetic momentum around the eight-minute mark.
To Actually Create Everywhere is an impressive release. It’s avant garde, free jazz style blends well with contemporary classical. This to me is the release you appreciate most if you delve deep into the music. I suggest getting comfortable, perhaps get your favorite beverage and immerse yourself into these complex but engaging songs. Recommended.
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