It’s extremely difficult to take any art form out of its space in the time period that it exists in. This is often doubly so in the music world. To take any album in right now is going to be an exercise in life experience. These are interesting and memorable times to be participating in and, with Generator, Vasudeva have plopped themselves by chance into the middle of it all. Listening to an entirely instrumental endeavor right now is bound to be colored by everything that’s going on. However, as is generally the case with this band, it’s going to be a lively affair with a number of hooks and grooves that will please most palates.
“Only On” begins as a contemplative number that gradually builds but in those opening moments the track feels like what it might be to contemplate the new calm, eerie as it might be, that is nearly everywhere we turn. From the quiet corners of our homes to the immense solitude one can feel simply stepping outside of those same homes right now, the song feels as much metaphor as vibe for it. That gradual build eventually transforms into a doggedly resolute, airy post-rock dance groove that also feels tailor made for this moment.
“III” sort of picks up where its predecessor leaves off but leads more from a space of bright, playfulness. The broad sweeping chords and a lift in the pace that crops up about half-way into the track brings in a sort of indefatigable sense that might just resemble something hopeful. In a lot of ways, this song feels like a far less frantic version of Covet. Both bands are fantastic at what they do, but Vasudeva’s approach feels more economical and straightforward while diverting just enough and adding layers in a way that keeps one’s attention from wandering here.
One of the elements that I’ve really enjoyed from the band on past efforts is the manner in which they weave a coherent whole out of their separate pieces. On Generator they manage to keep each track sounding individually interesting in a way that you don’t realize you’re participating in a running narrative until the later tracks such as “Stockmar” and “Halftime”. In that way it feels more like a score in the way that bands who feel far more ‘weighty’ and ‘serious’ like This Will Destroy You or Caspian tend to execute their material. Perhaps, if those bands are the dark epics, Vasudeva is the airy and whimsical journey of self-discovery.
You’ll notice, though, that the majority of this analysis is about feelings. That said, this kind of emotive manipulation is part and parcel for this album of finely crafted and extremely danceable post-rock. Generator should find its way into any playlists because it is one of those rare albums that have something for everyone. It is so widely available to be tailored to one’s own moods, thoughts, and feelings that how one experiences it is going to be reliant on what they bring to it. Overall, Vasudeva are one of those bands that I find myself often referencing in that way one does, “Oh, if you like X you are going to love Y”. In this equation, though, I often find myself inserting the band for either one. Being referenced and referential can’t be a bad thing and neither can releasing a front-to-back solid album like Generator.
Generator drops April 10th via Skeletal Lightning, and is available for pre-order now.