The Helio Sequence – “Stoic Resemblance” (Stereogum Premiere)
We’ve reached the point where if I can remember your band playing a basement show when I was in college, you’ve officially achieved veteran status. So it goes with the Helio Sequence, the longstanding experimental indie-rock duo who return today with news of their first album since 2012 for longtime label home Sub Pop. It was inspired by the “20-Song Game,” a popular competition amongst musician friends in Portland. A press release explains:
Songwriters would arrive in their studios at prearranged times and spend all day recording 20 complete songs. When they were finished, they’d have a party, listen to the results and talk about the process—of taking the good with the bad, of letting creativity push past constraint, of simply making music in the moment. Brandon Summers and Benjamin Weikel took the spirit of the “The 20-Song Game” to heart, and forged ahead writing a new record.
As for the results of the experiment: Lead single “Stoic Resemblance” matches harmonious psychedelic chorus with a brisk krautrock pulse, and you can hear it below.
01 “Battle Lines”
02 “Stoic Resemblance”
03 “Red Shifting”
04 “Upward Mobility”
05 “Leave Or Be Yours”
07 “Inconsequential Ties”
08 “Seven Hours”
09 “Phantom Shore”
10 “Never Going Back”
Here’s what the band looks like these days:
[Photo by William Anthony.]