The Flashbulb

The Flashbulb

Album Review: Arboreal

Some of the best instrumental post-rock comes from Chicago. I’ve delved into this genre enough to start recognizing patterns and Chicago is where it’s at for this stuff. The Flashbulb is a band of master tone crafters. They have plenty of albums well worth checking out, “Opus At The End Of Everything” being the most recent, but I will focus this review on their 2010 effort, “Arboreal.” I believe it’s a great first exposure to this band if you haven’t already heard of them. If you have, make sure you haven’t forgotten about this beautiful album.

“Arboreal” is a 17-track masterpiece on Bandcamp for $8.99. If you think that’s too much, you can always stream it for free. It’s got heavy jazz influence as apparent on tracks like “We, The Dispelled” and “The Great Pumpkin Tapes,” but it’s also got a lot of electronic parts with tracks like “Meadow Crush” and “Once Weekly.”

Every track on this album is beautiful. If I had to pick a favorite, I’d make a large case to pick two. “Once Weekly” would be my favorite of their more electronic side. It’s kind of reminiscent of early Aphex Time work paired with beautiful sonic swells. “We, The Dispelled” would be my other choice, and perhaps my singular choice as well. The drums are incredible here. All of the tones are perfect and the song flows incredibly, leaving you wishing for more after the short three minutes.

This band is versatile, and they’re great at everything they’re doing. Check out all of their work.