My Top 5 Columbus Born Albums Of 2018
For this second entry I decided to stick to some of my favorite albums to come out of the Columbus area in 2018. In no particular order, here they are.
Comrade Question - Four Seasons Con
For me, 2018 was a year of deep exploration into the world of psychedelia and related genres. So when I first heard this eight track release from Columbus’s Comrade Question, I was easily seduced by it’s psychedelic tinged amalgam of garage and surf rock. Within you’ll find the raw and abrasive characteristics of garage rock with the frantic reverberating riffs of surf rock. The drumming further adds to the music’s sense of urgency with their giddy up rhythms and upbeat tempos. The rich vocal harmonies are welded into the mix and occasionally come forward more aggressively through howls and shouts. All in all, it’s a groovy album that bears the whimsical fun of surf rock but with a punkish edge to it.
Hebdo - Dirt Turns to Mud
Ranging from outlaw to ethereal, this Americana soaked album is rooted in rich songwriting and synergistic arrangements. Utilizing components of Americana and diverse instrumentation, Hebdo creates a novel sound which he’s dubbed “adventure folk.” Appropriately so, you’ll come to find after giving this album a listen. He embraces the emotional depth and storytelling of folk but presents it in his own way, the sound of which, has a worldly feel. His vocals are smooth, but they carry some weight too. They remind me of those of John Gourley, singer of Portugal. The Man, but with a coarser grain. This is an album that should be experienced in its entirety from start to finish as it was intended to be. The eight song journey never takes you to the same place twice.
Garbage Greek - It’s Not Always Easy Being a Ghost
Another album that comes from the psych neighborhood I’ve been finding myself in all too often recently. Self described as Voodoo Garage Rock, a statement I would have to agree with. Chock-full of rambunctious and noisy uptempo songs delivered over a medium of fuzzed out guitars, dense bass, and punchy, stripped down drums. The reverb heavy vocals are ominous and distant but punch through during bouts of aggressive hootin n hollerin. Everything sounds as if it’s being played from within a large warehouse which suits the music well. It’s easy to get lost amongst this album’s gripping rhythms and trippy grooves.
Post Coma Network - Post Coma Network
This self-titled debut album beholds a sound akin to Mutemath’s earlier work. That’s probably not the most accurate comparison but it’s the best I’ve got. They create a form of alternative rock that is both forward and spacey. It’s poppy but it’s not. It has an intimate feel that originates in both the vocals/lyrics and the music. Catchy guitar melodies and smooth vocals make up the core, but you’ll find driving guitar solos and musical eruptions that bring emotional release too. All in all, there’s a crisp quality shared by these ten tracks of indie rock that makes for a highly enjoyable listen all the way through.
Brujas Del Sol - II
This last one is probably the most psych oriented albums of the bunch, and I must say, they do the genre justice with their galactic sounding grooves. Intricate and nuanced are two words that come to mind when listening to the soaring guitar tones and perpetually morphing rhythms on this album. To me it feels as if they’ve created some sort of vaporous auditory atmosphere within which they build the rest of their music which fluctuates between dreamy and nightmarish. Psych music is intended to induce the sensation of altered mental states (not that I’d know anything about that..), and in those regards these guys nail it. They have some serious jamtastic moments amidst their seven tracks of long plays too. From start to finish this album takes you on an auditory adventure well suited for a lonesome listen, perhaps on the back porch while looking at the stars. Or something like that.
I want to also mention that Blume by Souther is one of my top albums (EP) from the capital this year. I had already included it in my previous post though.