Written by Elise Olmstead

Milwaukee band Tacoma Washington Weekday Club has vision, and plenty of it.  Their love for artistic expression is immediately evident in their music, album artwork, and presentation, right down to the abstract and poetic “About” section on their website.  The blog is littered with musings on film, and their inspirations are drawn from “photography, theatre, art, literature, and film of all kinds.”  It’s no wonder their new album is named The Torrent, The Fountain, because their cup runneth over with beauty and inspiration.

The “experimental alternative” band released their new album The Torrent, The Fountain on January 5th and sent us a sneak peek.  I have to say, their music and aesthetic appealed to my art school sensibilities, so I was excited to take a stab at reviewing it.

The band consists of Logan Prevatt, Noah Turks, and Austin Mondloch, who play a multitude of instruments as well as acting as producers on their tracks.  The album can largely be described as haunting and atmospheric, beginning with an emergency broadcast, gently introducing a single electric guitar’s echo and quiet Anthony Green-like vocals.  “O’er” lets loose into what reminds of me of an edgier Further Seems Forever tune (plus a slightly demented child-like diddy at the end warning of demons in your basement), then “Dodecagon” drips of Bowie or The Smiths–that glam-sad sound with a hint of jazz. The echoing vocals of “Bridesmaid Reprise” lend to the atmospheric feel of the album–it has the eerie beauty of a One AM Radio song. “Heirloom” is a spoken word story told over experimental jazz, transporting you to some dark city art bar filled with cigarette smoke and angst.  “Red Cliffs//The Mountain” is the first song to feature some trumpet, as well as a voice over of an emergency broadcast about a storm, contributing to the overall story.  Eventually the song turns erratic, chaotic, and distorted, until the distortion evolves into a ring and then a soothing digital sound, spoken word, then the suddenly chipper “We’ll be back! There’s a key under the mat” at the end.

“Cynthia Clatter,” the last track, is indeed a clatter, of instruments, synth, unintelligible words, storm noises, and what sounds like a television switching channels.  It is less of a song, than it is a final scene in a movie.  Where are we?  We are completely immersed in this story, suddenly deeper than we expected to go.  We are left in this world by the musicians, the spell complete with the ending of the last track.

The Torrent, The Fountain is a great experience for those who like to delve deeper into their music.  It is a great experimental project, and dare I say concept album, that paints a unique picture for the listener to experience.  You can listen to the album in its entirety now on Soundcloud.