Album Review: Opener
Delicate guitar leads and harmonies hover over the stereo field, while lush vocals play hide and seek amid a solid bass, relied on like a trustworthy friend. Amy Viking’s 11-track album, Opener, captures a familiar essence of the 60’s psychedelic rock era and covers it with a bright shade of optimism. The end product is a very unique sound that accentuates pleasant memories back to one’s consciousness.
The entire album is tidily put together. It is cohesive and smooth. As a whole, each song merges with one another, creating an overarching image that firmly establishes their identity. Certain songs in the album do pop out as a bit different, but it never strays far from the overall creative style. In fact, these songs serve to not only highlight the uniqueness of the album, but their ability to explore various styles and incorporate it into their own.
One such song, “Lead in Water,” introduces the listener to a lonesome, retro synth that submerges each element into a grainy, digital world. The guitars, drums, bass, and vocals are minimal but effective in their depiction of heaviness and weight, displaced like lead in water. Occasionally, there is a catching of the breath as everything ceases, save for the vocals; however, this moment of relief is soon drowned back into the grainy synth. Not to give spoilers, each song on Opener possesses a certain unique character.
Amy Viking was founded by guitarists Max Olsen and Nicolai Wallace, and the two later found bassist Sam Calhoon and drummer Sam McDonald. Eager to share their creative work, they began playing shows around Seattle as a complete roster. There’s a great opportunity to check out Amy Viking as they perform at Central Saloon on November 20th for their album release and the Tractor Tavern on December 29th, so be sure to save the dates and pick up a copy of their sparkling debut album, Opener.
Listen to some tracks now on SoundCloud.
Opener Track Listing:
All the Different Limes
Like You Do
Lead in Water
Can’t Hear the Song
Time In All You Say
Molina (Tribute to Paco)
Guns Are Ready
Review by Kai-Yao Lan