Neon Indian
Psychic chasms


2.5
average

Review

by David James Young USER (181 Reviews)
January 18th, 2010 | 13 replies | 2,919 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A blip on the radar.

2 of 2 thought this review was well written

Neon Indian is the guise of twenty-one year old Texas boy Alan Polomo. On his debut album under the moniker, Psychic Chasms, he eagerly works towards a style of music heavily influenced by the eighties and electro/synth-pop that, while charming, is unfortunately frustrating. Not for how terrible his music is, however – more, this relates to just how tolerable it all is. These are the kind of songs that you really want to put an effort into, to really try and enjoy as much as possible. This is difficult, however, when most of Chasms is more than content to ride upon a singular wave of tedium and never blossom into anything that it has the potential to be. You can’t pick out anything offensively terrible on the record, but it’s certainly a release with little in terms of highlights.

The songs that aren’t bizarre warps of filler (“(AM)”, “Laughing Gas”) are severely lacking in dimension to the point that it seems self-contradictory: here on display are songs with pop ambition, soaking themselves in lo-fi pop repellent. Tracks such as lead single “Deadbeat Summer” - arguably the only moment on the record that you will remember beyond one or two listens - and the oddly regretful “Should Have Taken Acid With You” are self-contained whirrs of pre-programmed pop noise. Complete with tweeting-bird synth and mostly flat-sounding guitar, Psychic Chasms has moments where it is so weakly arranged, it’s as if every element of the song was an afterthought, thrown together at the very last minute. Polomo has everything in perfect order in theory only – when plotting out these tracks in the studio, something has gone exceptionally wrong.

Each song thuds along with plodding computerised rhythm, as Alan’s barely coherent, echo-laden voice recalls summers and friends past (or so say the lyrics booklet). For times that sound like they were a lot of fun, he sure doesn’t sound too happy singing about them. If any enjoyment sounds like it is being had anywhere on Chasms, it’s most likely when Polomo has picked up his electric guitar. “Terminally Chill”, for instance, boasts a brief but engaging solo that noodles its way over a late night groove and conveys the mood better than any of the marble-mouthed vocal drawls, coos and mumbles that pass themselves off as the lead vocals.

What a shame, really, that the album is trying to get so much done in its brief running time that it completely loses focus by the time it awkwardly wraps up. This is an unadventurous experiment on Polomo’s behalf that mostly bores, no matter what kind of sub-genre name you invent for it. On a positive note, Polomo is young and has plenty of time to explore what he is capable of. Psychic Chasms just can’t be it.



Recent reviews by this author
The Presets PacificaLast Dinosaurs In A Million Years
Every Time I Die Ex LivesDarren Hayes Secret Codes and Battleships
Wanda Jackson The Party Ain't OverPhrase Babylon
user ratings (271)
Chart.
3.6
great
other reviews of this album
Smevin Bravis (4.5)
Alan Palomo does a fantastic job of melding all his influences without sounding formulaic, and he ma...

Guy Smiley (4.5)
Chillwave? Glo-fi? Nah, throw away the labels, and take Psychic Chasms for what it is: a bubbly, hoo...

related reviews

Era Extrana
trending alt & indie albums

El Pintor

AM

To Be Kind

Lowborn

Comments:Add a Comment 
kingsoby1
Emeritus
January 18th 2010



4950 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

no way this is so fun

PuddlesPuddles
January 18th 2010



4772 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

It seems I'm between

AggravatedYeti
January 18th 2010



7684 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

ehhh, I'm not sure about the 2.5 personally. I saw these guys live a few months back and everything I heard was very good, tho yet to pick up the album.

joshuatree
Emeritus
January 18th 2010



3743 Comments


need to get this

AtavanHalen
January 19th 2010



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I saw them live just recently, too, at a festival. Left after a couple of songs to see Mayer Hawthorne, though.

Kiran
Emeritus
January 19th 2010



6001 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

should've taken acid with you gets me every time

nostalgia

Jemidu06
January 19th 2010



115 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

me and you disagree on everything it seems lol...respect it though. i dont see the "weak arrangement", if anything its just basic pop formula with the structuring. and this album isnt about "fun" or "good" times so much as it is about the act of reminiscence itself, at least imo. but anyways, its well-written and ill just agree to disagree.

Roach
January 19th 2010



2149 Comments


this is cool lol teh fuck

alachlahol
January 19th 2010



7487 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

goddamn naked neon indians dancing around this guy knows what's up

Rationalist
January 19th 2010



880 Comments


Boring album that tries to hide that fact with a small amount of innovation is a boring album that tries to hide that fact with a small amount of innovation.

alachlahol
January 19th 2010



7487 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

don't try to rationalize this you rebel scum

AtavanHalen
January 19th 2010



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Thanks for the feedback, guys. This is my first review in awhile, as you can see, so I wasn't sure how it would go down. All response is appreciated, however!

bab808
November 8th 2010



456 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this one really grew on me. definitely my most listened to album this summer. should have taken acid with you is absolutely perfect and i love the production on all of the tracks, especially laughing gas



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy