♫♪  Woodsman - “Further”

“I just can’t get into it without some human element.”
“What, you guys can’t sing? Or you just don’t want to?”
“Gimme some words to grab onto.”

I’m glad I haven’t heard any of these phrases uttered in the last, I dunno, decade. We know by now, after crying into our pints to Mogwai, raising our fists in the air to The Psychic Paramount, or spastically gyrating to Horse Lords, that contemporary rock music performed with electric string instruments and drums can spark our emotions and hold our attention without the vibration of vocal cords. Effective instrumental rock compositions offer narratives open to ambiguous interpretation, animated in full by decisions of timbre and structural recursion, freed from the signposts of verbal cues that ostensibly guide our reactions. A nuanced portrait of “humanity” emerges from a heap of plastic, metal, and wood. We can try to parse this humanity through the individual personalities of a group’s members, or we can allow the group to congeal into one breathing entity with hitherto undiscovered attributes and intentions to show us.

On their new single “Further,” arriving by way of Singles Club after an eponymous LP earlier this year, Brooklyn-via-Denver trio Woodsman drive straight up the cliffside and perch in the sunbeams overlooking the canyon. Two guitars occupy their own quadrants of the stereo spread, chiming major chords through gently disfiguring clouds of phasing and delay. Reverb-dusted drums hold down the center of the mix, colluding with layered synth washes and squiggling noise formants into a rhythmic vs. arrhythmic accompaniment for six string exploration — a tactic similarly utilized by fellow post-kraut cosmonauts and Fire Talk signees Tjutjuna. Not content to air these tones for their own sake, Woodsman sculpts them into an upward narrative that climbs through sub-climax after sub-climax on the way to a washed out coda.

• Woodsman: http://woodsmanman.bandcamp.com
• Singles Club: http://www.singlesclub.fm

Chocolate Grinder

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we’ll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.

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