So yeah, we slept on this one for a bit. But anticipation has an strange way of making things better—and that was just the case for Dream News, Attic Abasement’s first full-length since 2010’s Dancing Is Depressing. A project once unabashedly saturated in lo-fi singularity, Attic Abasement takes a more polished approach on Dream News; the Rochesterian trio shipped off to New Paltz to record this one in an honest-to-goodness studio this time around. I know what you’re thinking: “Uh oh, lo-fi project in a professional studio?” Well fret not, the bedroom production quality is the only attribute traded—the top-shelf songwriting, puzzle-piece riffage, and the magnetic vocal rawness of frontman Mike Rheinheimer remains in full effect.
With that said, it’s nothing short of impressive what the band has done with this record. Now rounded out with a full-time bassist and drummer (Keith Parkins and Joe Parker, respectively), AA’s sonic aesthetic becomes more direct and calculated, naturally, but there is still grit to be found within the folds. Opening track (and lead single) “Guarantee Jesus” aptly displays this new sound via familiar avenues: Rheinheimer’s wonderfully contemplative fixations backed by a rain-soaked guitar stroll, meandering basslines and tasteful drumming. Latter half number “Endless & Perfect” flies on a more maniacal side of things, a steady battering of methodical drumming and frenetic riffing—blood rushing through veins.
Other notable highlights include the bass-driven “Show Up to Leave” (if you’re listening to this one on crappy cellphone / laptop speakers you’re messing up hard), “So Far,” on which Rheinhemer takes full instrumental reign and sings with marginal conviction “I gave you nothing / and now you owe me,” and my personal favorite—the bumbling “Neon Trim,” clocking in at a fitting 1:33. But the creative nuances of the album as a whole are plentiful, and two weeks of listening simply isn’t enough time to uncover them all. So listen up—this album deserves a truckload of recognition. Check out “Show Up To Leave” below and visit their bandcamp page for digital downloads and beautifully colored vinyl records via Father Daughter Records.