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Ampledeed: A Is For Ampledeed

As a reviewer it is exciting to hear fresh new music by talented musicians and when it is a band's first album it is all the more special. The band is Ampledeed and the album is called A Is For Ampledeed. This is indeed a very good album, a uniquely creative and energetic piece, very hard to describe but very easy to listen to even though this is not the most digestible platter I have come across. No, this is quite an exercise in complexity and I wouldn't want it any other way.

Hailing from California, the band consists of Max Taylor (vocals, keyboards, drums, bass), Aaron Goldich (vocals, keyboards) and Luis Flores (guitars, ukulele, vocals). They also have help from a few guests including Isaac Watts (drums), Cody Farwell (bass), Aaron Munoz (bass), Collin Kupka (saxophone) and Allie Taylor (vocals).

The first track "We Breathe Time" starts the disc in fine fashion with a soft guitar intro, blending delicate instrumentation before the intensity rises and the riffs become a little heavier. Back and forth it goes, a purely progressive track with jazzy undertones and perhaps a Canterbury influence in the more sublime moments. The slightly eclectic "Super Collider Bromwich" combines excellent vocal harmonies with subtle twists and turns, melding fabulous guitar and keyboards on a musical palette both intricate and intense. There is so much going on here, one must pay close attention to truly appreciate its intricacies. "Wanders and Wonders" meanders through softer shades of vocals, keys and guitar. Even on these more introspective moments the band incorporates tempo changes and stop/starts, while never disturbing the flow of the song. The pastoral "If I Come Down" floats like a dream, especially the piano lines and vocals while "From Within A Tetrapathic Quasar" increases the tempo with its quirky builds, tempo changes and richly varied instrumentation. The instrumental "Why 6 is Afraid of 7" is another great track, perhaps a little heavier with a myriad of keyboard sounds while "Wake Of The Galaxy" includes a lovely piano based melody and a vocal arrangement taking me back to The Beatles and Klaatu. The sax solo fits perfectly making this my absolute favourite track.

Ampledeed have made an excellent debut album. While the '70s influence is strong; I hear bands like Caravan, The Beatles, Gentle Giant and Happy the Man, there are also modern elements to be found here. Accessibility and complexity do not often go hand in hand but Ampledeed have found a way to make it work. I for one cannot wait to hear what they come out with next.


Track Listing:
1. We Breathe Time
2. Super Collider Bromwich
3. It's Hard Work To Work (When You're Hard)
4. Wanders And Wonders
5. Why 6 Is Afraid Of 7
6. Drum Fuckin'
7. Brown Hole Blues
8. Travel Guide For The Maladjusted
9. Wake Of The Galaxy
10. Burning The Midnight Man Train To Georgia On My Mind
11. If I Come Down
12. Big Ole Bigiddy Balls
13. From Within A Tetrapathic Quasar
14. Dragon Lance

Added: January 29th 2014
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Score:
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 1450
Language: english

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