Following the exhaustive touring the duo undertook in support of 2008’s Keep Your Eyes Ahead, drummer/keyboardist Benjamin Weikel and vocalist/guitarist Brandon Summers returned home to discover their Portland practice pad had flooded. It's impossible to guess just how much new gear and a new rehearsal space influenced the style of The Helio Sequence's fifth album, Negotiations, but there's no denying there's a new sound in effect, as well. Less psychedelic, experimental and dynamic than previous efforts, Negotiations presents a languid, often sparse aural character that seems to do much more with much less. Alternately warmly intimate and icily remote, these fluid, melodic tunes float on gentle rhythms, buoyed by single-note guitar and keyboard riffs that don't bounce so much as burble, building an infectious potential energy without ever breaking free of their elegant restraint. Summers' low tenor and some of the synth-y touches might recall New Wave's balance of mope and hook, but the overall vibe is unmistakably contemporary, smooth and sophisticated. From front to back, it’s an accomplished, accessible and subtly engrossing listen. (Sub Pop)
Critics' Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Stars
Tyler- I can't believe how talented of a writer you are. This article was beautifully…
Great interview! Give the interviewer a full time job! He's great!
The DJ was actually The Castle's very own DJ Tom Gold :)
Fabulous review Gabe! Too bad I missed it.