The One AM Radio
A Name Writ in Water
The One AM Radio is the latest in the badly drawn lineage of post-modern singer/songwriter folk; where you’re just as likely to hear gentle finger-picking and downbeat strums as you are raindrop electronics and bedroom orchestras. This type of music exists in states not necessarily delicate, but fleeting, trailing off into different somber sounds. “Under Thunder and Gale,” for example, rumbles quietly like a ghost ship in the distance, barely creating ripples in the water.
“Shivers” marks the album’s mid-point emotional upswing, bringing in an up-tempo breakbeat, buoying rapid cello lines and sparse bass notes. Later, “Witness” features a loose, deep guitar strum, full-fisted bass and minimal live drumming.
A handful of tracks show main man Hrishikesh Hirway as a mixing board composer. Of these, “This is a Document” works the best, battering chopped, looped drum work and rhythmic string structures together into something vaguely driving. This track gives the sense that Hirway has a much more dance-oriented album in his future. Hopefully, he doesn’t completely abide by his entreaty to “let your mind slip free / your ballast is your memory,” because it would be a shame if he neglected the sweetly simple combination of sounds on this album.
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