Friday, March 25, 2016
Through The Sparks - Transindifference
Through The Sparks is an excellent band that makes exciting music, and has done so for over a decade. They aren't from one of the big music capitals of the US, although I've discovered that the Birmingham, Alabama scene deserves far more attention than it receives. I must admit that the band's wonderfully evocative name probably would have prompted me to check them out even without having heard their music. But it was the music I heard first, and I was hooked. Through The Sparks has the sound of a band that has listened to a lot of music by disparate artists, and they find a way to incorporate or reinterpret everything they like into their own sound. And for their latest album, Transindifference, it seems to me that there is a lot of '70s and '80s rock in the DNA. You know, a time when rock bands were happy to be known are rock bands. The album kicks off with the proggy "Execution", then offers "Burning Bush" and "Living Rooms" -- two bits of pop noir perfection that recalls the best of Joe Jackson and David Bowie. "The Roseroom" boasts a cinematic western twang. By the time we're done we've been treated to well-crafted slices of southern rock, psychedelia, indie pop and glam, with soulful vocals and contributions from a large compliment of talented musicians headed by Jody Nelson. The breadth of the music is ambitious, but the band manages it without strain and, I dare say, a certain looseness born of confidence.
My own personal list of top tracks is "Self Immolation", "The Driveway" "Burning Bush", and "Heavy (-30-)". You may or may not agree with my choices, but if you like rock music, you will find favorites on this album.
Transindifference is out now via Communicating Vessels.