Howard - Together Alone

by D R Pautsch Rating:6 Release Date:2018-09-14
Howard - Together Alone
Howard - Together Alone

Howard Feibusch has got a problem.  He is happy.  As Kurt Cobain once put it he probably misses ‘the comfort of feeling sad’.  Recently married the love songs he is used to writing seem misplaced.  So, on this Sophmore, Howard, the band he has named after himself, take a different approach.  Trying to decry modern life rather than love it is an album that promises a lot and attempts to deliver it in a variety of different ways. Horns and electronics are used in a number of different songs to change the sound but ultimately this sounds like an album of yearning, full of warmth in a world devoid of any.

Your Honor comes out like an Olivia Tremor Chord version of mainstream eighties pop.  Full of swashes of electronics, driving drums and synths it is the most immediate thing here.  It is a step ahead of many of the acoustic lead guitar numbers that dominate here.  Horns and electronics are used in a number of different songs to change the sound but ultimately this sounds like an album of yearning, full of warmth in a world devoid of any. Made up My Mind is a careful song that sounds like it belongs on a beach long after the day is done and your opportunity is missed.  However, before we get to the memorable ending we almost lose interest in such a delicately and slowly constructed song.  Soul Mourning is a slow paean to Radiohead that doesn’t quite deliver the innovation it aspires to imitate.  The title track starts like a music box, perhaps an overworked mechanism now in music, that gradually almost grudgingly blossoms into electronics, teasing its various textures as if shyly becoming the song it might someday want to be.  There is beauty here but the effort of finding it seems to be more than its worth at times.

In modern life, there is much to enjoy, experience and share through electronic media.  It’s a life we are almost living.  On this album, unwittingly, the effort of trying to portray that has led to an album that does the same.  Much to admire, nothing to fall in love with it is neither overly memorable nor forgettable. This is an album that will sound good in pieces but as a whole just lacks the moments to keep you coming back.

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