Denver band, American Culture, recently released their third album—and first album since 2015—For My Animals. This record is an extremely interesting amalgam of styles and sounds, but predominantly rock. Even as this blend of genres gives the album an unpredictable feel, the band uses distortion of both instruments and vocals to tie the whole thing together into a cohesive unit. As usual, here are some highlights:
“Silence” opens up the album with laid-back guitar and a fuzzy sound. Upbeat drums play as the lyrics of the song discuss childhood and its limitations—“People tried and failed to love me, they didn’t know how to deal with such a sensitive child.” The track has many different layers of instrumentation, including bits of twangy guitar. The distortion and repetition in title track “For My Animals” make it sound like it could play on an oldies station. “No Peace” starts with isolated drums, then brings in flute, which adds to the album’s variety of sound.
“Small Talk” is one of the fastest and most obviously rock songs on the album, and includes my favorite guitar parts from For My Animals (as well as being my favorite song from the album in general). “Pedals” is another lighter rock song with fantastic guitar, but also great contrast between the louder and quieter parts of the song. Transition track “Lude Dub” reminds me of a Gorillaz song intro, stark against the harmonica of the following track, “Losing My Mind.” “I Like American Music” brings back that fuzzy sound, and an awesome bass part. “1972” again sounds like it could have been recorded decades ago, or at least could have been on the soundtrack for a movie set in the 70s. “Dub for Eagles” is over three minutes of distorted voices set over a chill instrumental track. “Natural Violence” closes the album with more of that characteristic distortion, low vocals, and catchy guitar.
All in all, this album was a great listen. Though I don’t usually listen to this type of music, For My Animals was interesting and fun to play. The mixes of genres and unconventional instruments and sounds from different eras of music kept the record from getting at all boring. Most of the songs within themselves were a bit repetitive, but this worked with the album as a whole—each song stands on its own, with its own distinct sound and purpose. I would definitely recommend this album to anyone who likes distorted, fuzzy music, or anyone who wants to try something new.
Picture credit comes from: https://americanculture.bandcamp.com/