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REVIEW: Chris Cohen - As If Apart

REVIEW: Chris Cohen - As If Apart

By: Daniel Ward
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A review of the Chris Cohen album As If Apart.

 

Four years since debuting with Overgrown Path, Chris Cohen’s sophomore release As If Apart is out. Cohen established credibility contributing and touring with bands like Cass McCombs, Deerhoof and Ariel Pink before heading out on his own. The new record draws from the sad, yet soothing atmospheres of 70s singer/songwriters, and the guitar washes of bands like Sonic Youth.


The opening track, “Torrey Pine” sets the wistful and melancholic tone of the record. It brings to mind images of the sun rising and setting over California beaches. Cohen’s vocals are rich and the lyrics, although vague, are evocative and moving.


Title track “As If Apart” is a spike of energy amidst a mostly mellow record. It rides a bumping bass pulse as keys hammer above. “Drink from a Silver Cup” is sad, almost mournful—a feeling that is highlighted by the subtle sounds of children playing at the opening of the track.


Creating a gorgeous, expansive atmosphere “Memory” hints at fears of loss. “In a Fable” is one of the most touching new songs and it hits with a fantastic bassline.


Mixing up the time signatures, “Needle and Thread” is a waltz with buzzing keys and phase shifting guitars. “The Lender” lyrically touches on shock at the quick passage of time while the music gently drifts by.


Simple and candid, “Sun Has Gone Away” strips down the music to just piano and vocals. “No Plan” is a 45 second instrumental that sounds like looking out a window on a rainy day.


Finishing the record, “Yesterday’s On My Mind” puts some punch in the rhythm section and punches you in the stomach with lyrics about separation and estrangement.


As If Apart is a sad record, but it never gets in your face. It touches you like the chill of a breeze when walking on an autumn evening. It’s celestial, touching and hard to pin down.

 

Chris Cohen - As If Apart


Listen to a song by clicking on a title below:

Click to Play Chris Cohen - “As If Apart” (Official Video)

Click to Play Chris Cohen - “Torrey Pine”

 

 
 
 
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