CD Review

 

 Listen while you read — “Postponement”on Bandcamp  

 

 

Flaural

By Steve Graham

It took three years to make, and it’s only eight tracks long, but Flaural packs a lot into its 32-minute-long full-length debut album.

“I think it’s important for people to listen to the songs more than once,” singer Colin Johnson told Westword back in April. “You’ll discover all the little things we hid in there.”

The album is called “Postponement” because the recording was delayed to spend more time crafting the songs and because some personal struggles and hurdles got in the way of finishing and releasing the record.

Guitars swirl and cosmic synths channel Martian melodies over pulsing krautrock drums. Johnson’s lyrics are sparingly and effectively placed amid long instrumentals in most of the tracks. The result is shoegaze-influenced psychedelic rock — like a louder, tighter Brian Jonestown Massacre or a more melodic, blissed-out version of My Bloody Valentine.

The standout peak moment on the album is debut single “The Thinker.” Musically, it kicks off catchy and bright, but the lyrics explore some depth and darkness. Both the song and the album cover subtly reference singer Johnson’s father, who had Lou Gehrig’s disease and died March 27, 2017.

“Unanswered questions still haunt me/nobody likes you when you’re not well,” he sings in the first two minutes before the instrumental second half of the song gradually builds into the best kind of noisy indie-rock freakout. And study the sunny abstract art on the cover to see a clock stopped at 3:27.

The album stays strong through the end. The closing tracks are “Wink,” a funky jam that opens with an arresting siren, and “1616,” a heady swirl of psychedelia.

 

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