Eight and a Half equals Justin Peroff (Broken Social Scene’s drummer) plus Dave Hamelin and Liam O’Neil (both of The Stills). Do you know what I hear when I hear this long laboured project? Music to commute to. It’s the soundtrack to the 9-5er who takes the subway to work, the bike ride downtown, the jog in a forest. I can’t help applying this album’s soundscape to some real-life-scape. The music demands it. So now on the transitory path of self-reflection, I find myself grounded in the limbo between my minds’ subconscious impressions and where I am situated in the world. Funny too, that this album was created in transit between Montreal, Chicago and Los Angeles where the trio were geographically separated from each other, but bound by the gift of the internet and file sharing.
There is something profound so it is not yet pretty. Like dipping a big toe into the swimming pool. We’ve all done it and can’t take back the feeling. Is it the antithesis melodies? Is this what existentialism sounds like? Fragmented and unfulfilled? The music demands attention to it once you hear it. But maybe that’s just hearing in general. I feel forced to re-live the sounds that remind me of my developing years… 80’s outer space, an X-files jingle, the fax machine, grandma’s old piano, church, “We’re The Kids In America.” When did I get so out of touch I needed a reminder? It’s a bit disturbing. I suppose, Eight and a Half’s album isn’t about getting to nine, but about the commute to nine.
It’s pop-rock avant-garde, it’s in fashion…
© Glyde Barbey, Music Vice
Eight and a Half play the Sound Academy this Friday, 27 April
Internet link: Eight and a Half
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