Society always celebrates the records that top the Billboard 200 album chart. Back of The Billboards is a Music Times weekly segment that looks at the opposite end: the new record that finished closest to the back of the Billboard 200 for the previous week. We hope to give a fighting chance to the bands you haven't heard of.
Week of 10/17/2014
WHO: From Indian Lakes
WHAT: Absent Sounds
From Indian Lakes, an alt-rock band from roughly that exact area in California, becomes just the second act in the history of Back of The Billboards to take the no. 200 spot. Kudos.
Kudos is due as well for the well-crafted new release from the band, Absent Sounds, which carefully takes the band's subtly post-rock sound and neatly packages it into ten tracks fitting within 35 minutes, avoiding the bluster of some acts with similar approaches.
It owes much of this success to the vaguely folky songwriting style of Joey Vannucchi, who reportedly grew up with electricity near Yosemite National Park, learning all of his instruments sans amplification. The transition from nothing to reverb-laden genre where he finds himself now doesn't seem to have caused a problem. If anything, the band's willingness to keep the effects minimal (while still present) makes the record all so much more palatable.
One act we haven't seen this group compared to yet, surprisingly, is the Smashing Pumpkins. The thought kicks in during the opening for "Breathing, Desperately," which is spot on to the intro for Billy Corgan's "Disarm." The song quickly gains its own identity but the thought remains: From Indian Lakes shares the same ethereal approach to rock that Corgan perfected during parts of Siamese Dream and Mellon Collie and The Infinite Sadness. And that's not a bad standard to be compared to.