Pop Style Sampler
Desperate Spirits – October 27, 2017
2017 has been a busy year for Trevor Tremaine, musically speaking – February saw the release of the great full-length ATTEMPT album, Personal Fables, he sang the terrifically strange track “Rock ‘N’ Roll Beans on Big Fresh’s Fall Preview EP, and has been busy as a part of Lexington’s Desperate Spirits label. Following all that up is the Against the Light EP, a brief four-song EP to hold us over to whatever he has coming next.
“Cancellations and Delays” is a mostly electronic piece, hinting its vocal melody in an early synth line before arriving at the three-word lyrics found in the song’s title. It’s a fun, fresh track, an ode to snow days(?), and it explores all sorts of texture and feelings over its four and a half minutes. I had heard an earlier version of “Items on a Questionnaire” on a Lexington music sampler while deejaying at WRFL – this iteration of the recording adds drums, strings, and flute to the mix to further flesh out the track. The lyrics ruminate on Trevor’s love for his son, and the vocal melody strikes the ever-shifting harmonic progression at wild, dissonant angles. “Overdraftin'” is an upbeat, catchy, wordless track that builds a platform for a great guitar solo. The title track begins with sparse, dripping percussion and a cappella vocals, building some really complex harmonies and structures with minimal instrumentation. Halfway through, cascading electronic tones bridge into the second half of the song, which plays out with more dense instrumentation and an increasingly accelerating guitar solo.
This EP doesn’t have the cohesive feel that Personal Fables had, but I think that’s part of the point – Against the Light gives you a sampling of several styles, each with a high level of musicality and fidelity. It’s a quick, fun listen, and definitely one that fans of ATTEMPT should enjoy finding something new in.
Tracks I Liked: Cancellations and Delays!, Items on a Questionnaire!!!, Overdraftin’!, Against the Light!!
Ben Southworth – October 29, 2017 – West Sixth Street