Gemini is Hybrid’s first full-length album. Being a Connecticut resident myself like the band, I was very excited to listen to what our small, yet very diverse state has to offer in terms of indie music acts.
Hybrid is undoubtedly unique. His musical style blends together elements of indie rock, electronica, folk and experimental music as the artist describes himself on his Bandcamp page as an “indiepop/folktronica artist,” which seems about right.
“Half Life” opens the album. It sounds like an indie version of Michael Jackson’s “Black Or White” with the muffled background electric guitar. “Distracted” directly follows as a fun, indie summer song that you would play in the car with your friends on a cross-country road trip. Ravi Krishnaswami, the brainpower behind Hybrid, appears to sample and loop a snippet of his own voice throughout the track, while gives it an interesting electronic feel.
“Portland” is about the isolation of the Maine city from the rest of New England, which he cleverly deems as a “prison of small states.” I can attest to this. New England does sometimes feel like a prison in the sense that it’s sort of tucked away from the rest of the country up in its northeast corner. I can relate to a lot of the lyrics in this song, having grown up in New England my entire life. I can especially relate to the artist’s glorifying the city of Portland, which is pretty universally-accepted among New Englanders as a generally awesome place.
It feels like the album shows a pattern in its setlist; a back-and-forth between bright upbeat alternative songs and chiller, more laid-back acoustic folk songs. This honestly kept me on my toes. As a listener, I enjoy the variety that the artist puts forward on this project.
The peak of this album has to be either the first or last track. I enjoy “Half Life” because of its catchiness, while “Little One” strikes an emotional chord, as it seems to be the Krishnaswami’s ode to an important child in his life that he promises will never see a world without him. Hybrid smoothly morphs his final lines “without me,” into a child singing “without you,” which I see as a personal and tasteful touch to the album as a whole.
Overall, this project is intricate and diverse. It’s most definitely worth listening to if you are a fan of The Head And The Heart, Bombay Bicycle Club and Deerhunter. I’m excited to hear what this unique musician from my home state will come forth with next.
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