There’s something that screams mild disorder in the artists merging rock, psychedelic, and power pop in the modern music scene, but something very right about the trance-like state listeners are put in whilst on the musical journey. And it appears Vancouver rockers Gnomadics know this all too well, and have helmed—and executed—their latest release accordingly.
Opener “Purple Flowers” begins almost child-like, complete with whimsical guitar riffs and nonsensical lyrics. Yet there’s appeal in the clever instrumentation and raw vocals, drawing listeners in to each rhythmic strum and drum beat. The pace quickens with “Lend Me Your Bones,” an oddly cheery tune for one whose lyrics I expected the worse from. It’s thoughtful, almost playful, but still dons a groovy rock ‘n’ roll vibe. “Autobiography I” is clouded with nostalgic feelings on both sides of the spectrum. “Oh memories / At every corner / Oh misery / Never more than I need,” outpours the lead vocalist, sombre and accepting.
“Draws Surreal” has a depressing ambience, showcasing wounds and hurt. Powerful guitar solos and angst-ridden vocals are the strengths of the song, which help to draw out the vulnerable and wistful tones: “And I don’t want to care to see that light again / Cause I don’t want to fix my sight on this fight again.” Clocking in at just under 3 minutes, closing track “Try It Again” impresses with its blend of roots-oriented sound, and could have easily been plucked from a ‘90s flick.
For a toe-tapping listen, Try It Again is the catch of the day. Although the songs lack cohesion with each other, each is well-crafted and unique to the ear. The shift in tempo and rough-edged rhythms are refreshing, and the passion for rock ‘n roll is undoubtedly present in the forefront of the melodic tunes. Far from solid direction, the wandering souls of the Gnomadics are carving their own approach to original music, and are surely making memorable waves in the process.