Robby Fischer is a musician from Grand Rapids who almost gets away with the “I don’t give a hoot” style of recording on his recent release You’ve Changed. He says, “I wanted to do all the things that the studio people told me we couldn't do when we were recording my other bands (maxing out the gain on the inputs, laying down overdubs of just guitar feedback, doing things that are bad for microphones, etc.).” I don’t mind this approach; I remember reading about multiple artists who embraced similar aesthetics in the studio. It can often work to an artist’s advantage and in Fisher's case it did except the recordings were often too lo-fi for lo-fi.
You get the impression Fischer is a loose cannon that could go off any second with You’ve Changed. His delivery and music is reflective of the way in which he chose to record the album. He isn’t always on key, in time and the music feels loose on the verge of sloppy. It’s these aspects that give the recording some character and likeability. Fischer pretty much does what he wants on this album. The emphasis is on the stew of emotions rather than the chord changes, killer leads or metronome-like drum work. Suffice it to say this could be considered a punk album.
Fischer starts off with a winner entitled “Can I Live Alone?” The song revolves around power chords, simplistic drums and bass. If it weren't for the lyrics on Bandcamp I wouldn't have been able to distinguish a single world. He put his vocals through some kind of filter that make it seem like more of an instrument then a lead vocal part. He sings, “I've never been to the mountain to the center of sin I said that I've never cried I've never listened to the fine things inside.”
Fischer recounts young love on “She Does Drugs.” The lyrics are juvenile, frivolous and perfectly apt for garage/punk rock. He sings, “It's all right anyway I don’t have that much to say we’ll go out she’ll get high I don’t mind I don’t mind she does drugs.”
As the album progresses the songs are consistently pretty solid although tracks like “I’m So Cool” sounded so lo-fi I had a hard time enjoying the track.
You won’t find the best-written songs on You’ve Changed but Fischer makes it up with his delivery. The only thing I would say to Fischer is that next time I would look into improving the mix by about twenty five percent. Keep the same aesthetic just have some more separation and less mud.
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