Artist: Stephen Steinbrink
Title: Arranged Waves
Label: Melodic Records
Keywords: Experimental Pop, Folk Pop, Home Recording
Reviewer: Alex Spalding
I’d like to share a really nice album with you today that I was introduced to. It’s for anyone in the mood for chill, mellow pop. Nice things, lovely things. Sweet smelling things.
Let’s start with the first track here, as is customary… um, it seems to be titled ‘Now You See Everything’… I don’t know why I phrased that in that way, there was no confusion, really. It’s sounding so good already, with these nice guitars, crisp drums coming through, a bit of sophisticated song-craft. I think that’s a large part of why I love this… catching that sense of devotion to the art of sculpting pop songs that move, breathe. The vocals are soft-sung, introspective. The sound, though, the sound… lots of pretty butterflies, flip-flap their wings right into my heart while I listen to Stephen Steinbrink.
‘Animate Dust’ is the second mood, a warm slide through a lost passages of time, reels running in the mind of mellow forgotten ’70s musks, wood-paneled, air stale cigarette dreams. This is one of my faves.
The next one, ‘Trust’, sounds like a country airport, jet lagged pedal steel guitar ambience floating up into the atmosphere. It’s a nice track, with surprising low end frequencies! The guitars seem to swirl around.
‘A Simple Armature Of Your Ideal World’ is a great piece of music! This version of the track was my introduction to this artist. I love the lyrics and the fragile, wispy electronic wave vibe of the whole thing.
Next up is ‘Synesthetic Ephemera’. The feelings here are bright and cold. The guitars wobble like the waves on a beach. The lyrics, as usual, are totally quality. We’re smooth sailing…
… and get surfed on ‘Brand New Manic Brain Holder’, which feels like a forgotten folk song, meandering on a grassy hill, soft expressed anxieties. There’s a Chihuahua Pug laying on my arm to get closer to the speakers and closing his eyes.
‘Tangerine’ is a curiosity, with its reverse soundfield like a bed of ocean upon which lay the vocals, set adrift on a raft. Everything is soft, and you fall inward into yourself while it plays.
Then, ‘It’s So Pretty (What You Did For Me)’. There’s a cool 80s boombox rhythm with echos, and an overlay of glimmering guitar. It’s like a strange fractured disco track.
‘It Takes A Lot To Change A Mind’ is like an alternate take on ‘A Simple Armature…’, still nice, but lacking certain qualities I appreciated in the first version.
You’ll probably like the vibe of ‘Sand Mandalas’ as well, which definitely evokes the lapse of endless dunes and timelessness in a desert drive. It’s another well crafted pop song.
‘Impress My Memory’ starts of with some interesting electronic tones, then going into a soft composition.
‘Arranged Waves’ is a beautiful finish… meditative guitar ambiance, total bliss.
I bid thee to pleasure your ears by clicking the link down below, where you’ll find this series of lovely tracks collected. Later!