Album Review: Vasudeva – ‘Generator’
Posted: by The Editor
Instrumental bands tend to be considered inaccessible and boring. No vocals means no hooks! Songs stretch on for nearly ten minutes you can’t sing along! Enter Vasudeva, whose third album Generator is made specifically for the skeptics.
While the band’s previous two LPs dealt in the sort of math-influenced post-rock of bands like Giraffes? Giraffes! and And So I Watch You From Afar, Generator eases off of the technicality in favor of spaciousness. The result is one of the genre’s more unique albums in recent memory, one that, ten or fifteen years from now, might be seen as a jumping off point for a new take on post-rock. In place of tapped riffs are programmed drums and airy synths; songs like “Breaks” and “III”, two of the more traditional songs on the record, are given a sense of levity most of Vasudeva’s peers wouldn’t experiment with.
This is taken to its logical conclusion with “Only On”, which builds slowly from a jittery beat for nearly three minutes until blossoming into a straight-up dance-rock song. It’s ambitious as hell, but it sounds perfectly natural. Elsewhere “Stockmar” finds the band tapping R&B influences for a sunny, piano-led ballad that stands up to the band’s best material. The electronic sounds add a vibrancy and a texture to the band that fully rounds it out – more than enough to make up for the dearth of mathy riffs.
Whether or not Generator is Vasudeva’s best LP is beside the point; what is clear is that it’s the band’s most fully realized, most creative, and most accessible. Those who might not normally be drawn to post-rock can find footholds in the more mainstream elements of the album, while fans of the genre will likely appreciate the band’s willingness to experiment with brighter sounds. It’s hard not to appreciate, after all, when a band creates an album this good.
The Alternative is ad-free and 100% supported by our readers. If you’d like to help us produce more content and promote more great new music, please consider donating to our Patreon page, which also allows you to receive sweet perks like free albums and The Alternative merch.
Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison