The Vacant Lots-Departure

             

Their debut album cover says it all-Jared Artaud and Brian MacFadyen are here to champion an unrelenting minimalism that makes it impossible to keep your ears (or eyes) away.

From the start, Departure wants to take you on a trip: “Mad Mary Jones” fades in with a trance-like drone and shows a band that is clearly well schooled in their sixties sound. “Never Satisfied”, “Tomorrow”, and “Do Not Leave Me Now” all follow the same formula of simple harmonies and short, melodic lines from the guitar. “Paint This City” veers from this sound for a slower, darker, and sparser atmosphere, more eighties inspired as opposed to sixties.

“Before The Evening’s Thru” blends its textures beautifully: a watery guitar progression pushes the song forward in smooth strokes while a sci-fi synth runs circles around a steadfast tambourine. Screeching feedback announces “6 AM” and clapping provides a background for Jared and his almost-singing. His vocals always sound very distant and unintelligible, maybe too much, considering the emphasis he puts on his poetry. “Make The Connection” is ten minutes of building intensity that goes nowhere but provides a delicious tension for Jared’s lyrics. He abandons singing entirely for a spoken word dialogue that brings to mind Jim Morrison’s style.

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