Two years ago, in the same week that the people of the United States of America elected Donald Trump as the new president, the Virginia-based fingerpicking virtuoso Daniel Bachman released a really beautiful self-titled album of instrumental acoustic meditations. I remember spending that election day with that album, and it did a pretty amazing job containing my stress — at least up until the results started to emerge, at which point no album could’ve contained my stress.
This week, Bachman returns with the new album The Morning Star, and he’s not really trying to contain anyone’s stress anymore. The Morning Star is a massive, sprawling album, spread out over two LPs and 74 minutes. It’s Bachman’s most ominous, experimental work. He’s still recording instrumental acoustic tracks, but he’s filling them up with stomach-lurching drones and eerie background noises. If it’s not too pretentious to say that an instrumental album reflects a national mood, I’d say that this album does that.
The Morning Star is out 7/27 on Three Lobed Recordings.