Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Future Clouds and Radar- Peoria

Future Clouds and Radar

Besides being the name of an Algonquin Indian tribe in the United States and largest city on the Illinois River, Peoria is the title of the Austin indie rockers Future Clouds and Radar’s sophomore album. The band is made of Robert Harrison on vocals and guitar, Darin Murphy on drums and vocals, Hollie Thomas on keys and vocals, Joshua Zarbo on bass and vocals, and Kullen Fuchs on trumpet, keys and vocals. The band formed in 2006.

The first track, entitled, “The Epcot View,” begins with a twangy guitar riff and transforms into a hypnotizing lure into the rest of the album. “Old Edmund Ruffin,” is a soft melody.

At the 54 second mark, the third track, “Feet on Grass,” —a whirlwind of instrumental “synthy” futuristic keys accompanied by upbeat drum beating — sounds like it should be on the Neverending Story soundtrack. “Eighteen Months,” is the album’s most upbeat track saturated with groovy go-go guitar and trumpet. More of a cheesy retro bar theme, Harrison repeats the lyrics “I spent eighteen months buried alive,” over and over throughout the song.

The concluding track, “Follow the Crane,” contains a romantic lounge element with its tap, tap, tap cymbal sounds, melodic drumming and cool jazz piano riffs. Midway through the track a mess of noise effects of sirens, sci-fi sounds, dog barking commences only to be silenced by Harrison’s vocals followed by a solo of eerie piano playing. The melancholy piano notes are accompanied by ghostly “ah ah ah ah” vocals at the posterior of the track. Truly a schizophrenic experimental mess of Oasis vocals, Beatles-esque ambience, and experimental Pink Floyd progressions, Peoria is a cool chill out album.

The album’s cover features three big stripes of an American flag with a large amp in the foreground and the band’s name in uneven lowercase font.