It Hugs Back - Slow Wave (2015)
While the band It Hugs Back has never been high on my radar since I discovered them several years ago, they have never been off of my radar either … with the release of Slow Wave moving them back to within earshot.
Wrapped in gentleness, Slow Wave is an alluring album that inches its way from your speakers and across your room shimmering with lush subtle movements and hushed vocals that are laced together by hypnotic low keyed guitars and impending keyboards. Though when you own a good set of headphones the metamorphosis is evermore intoxicating, as the music fills and redefines the entire atmosphere, rendering the listener wasted and awash in a warm liquid atmosphere that nearly induces flight.
To create this atmosphere, Slow Wave was laid down live by the entire band, with additional guitars, analog synthesizers, vocal overdubs, and yes, even mellotron strings to heighten the experience, making this one of the most surprisingly eloquent tranquil and expansive psychedelic albums of all time, feeling organic and alive … which is the quintessential aspect of any atmospheric dreamer’s dream.
This is a work of sonic emotional depth, one that seeps into your floorboards, polishing the wood to a warm glow, making for a superb horizontal listen that will not trap you so much as it induces you to return again and again for another hazy listen … one where splintered sunlight gives way to yellow moonbeams that nearly impart wisdom.
If Slow Wave lacks anything, it’s that there’s no central core around which all of these songs are meant to exist … though I think I prefer to believe that each of these luscious numbers came into being to exist within its own space, relying on nothing, other than to be followed by something equally as compelling.
- Jenell Kesler
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