Bipin Bobby Kumar’s love for music is apparent simply in his story. Kumar who is the composer, songwriter, producer and audio engineer for Apollo Architect is unable to use instruments because of a debilitating neurological disease. He relies on session musicians to play on his recent EP entitled The Wanderer.
The Wanderer is an instrumental EP primarily founded in post-rock but other shades of genres like shoegaze get blended in there as well which is to be expected. Kumar isn’t reinventing the wheel by any stretch of the imagination but the EP does have a number of inspired moments.
I have never understood boxing up an instrumental album with a concept but that is what Kumar has done. The Wanderer is about a boy named Apollo who runs away from home to understand the purpose of his life. That’s all the information you are given and besides the vague song titles you are free to let your imagination run wild. In all honesty his short injection of a concept with no actual story had no affect on my listening experience and I highly doubt it will affect yours.
For better or for worse The Wanderer contains most of the tropes and clichés you would expect from an album that is primarily post-rock. There is a constant mix of melancholy and wonder that usually ends up in some sort of grandiose overly epic culmination of sounds.
Kumar has some mild success with “Vegas Desert/A Cold Night” which contains Mogwai-esque guitar work. The seven-minute song begins to lose steam halfway through after the first climax but overall it was still enjoyable. As I mentioned Kumar has some inspired moments but nothing that wasn’t already perfected by groups like Explosions In The Sky and Godspeed You! Black Emperor.
In 2015 post-rock has become one of the most over-saturated genres in the umbrella of music. Kumar is off to a solid start but still needs a bit of honing and tweaking before he can compete with artists who have revitalized and perfected the genre.
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