Psychedelic rock has been a staple in the American music scene ever since its heyday back in the late ‘60s, and its appeal is as strong as ever before. Harakiri pulls from this ever-morphing genre and infuses their own take on fusion, indie roc, and progressive styles on their self-titled album, released in 2014.
The highly polished “C’est La Vie” softly begins with a palm-muted guitar riff before diving into a crisp, well-orchestrated rock jam complete with scat singing, vocal harmonies and a driving drum groove. The song delves through several different sounds and styles throughout the five-and-a-half-minute tune, and the effortless, blending vocals are especially noticeable. The next song “Danger Will Robinson” builds on the themes from the opening track but knocks down the tempo just a bit without losing energy momentum.
“The Borgia” revolves around smooth guitars, velvety vocals and an overall throbbing soundscape that gives and takes throughout the song. Harakiri’s experimental side is evident in “Through the Gates” a song that plays with chords and harmonies in a cheery, relaxed way. The album intensifies with “Rumspringa” an emotive, dynamically powerful anthem.
A voice and lone guitar begin “To My Old Man” with vocal harmonies and lo-fi instrumentation taking the stage in an old-time radio-esque tune that quickly transitions into an angst-filled rock ballad. The band’s contrast in styles and incorporation of unlikely sounds captures the listener’s attention consistently throughout the album, and the danceable “Lorelei” embodies this perfectly.
“I Love Lucy” feels like the end of the album with its drawn out intro of screaming guitar notes and crashing drums. However, the record continues through two more tracks, “Epilogue” a straightforward jazzy piece and “Apples From the Tree” the creative, acoustically driven bookend to a genuinely enjoyable album. Harakiri can be confident that their album has achieved all a listener could ask for and will surely be received accordingly.
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