Maze of Graves
Anyone yearning for some lo-fi alternative rock can stop searching for awhile and listen to Temporary Room, the first full-length album from Indiana’s two-piece duo Stagnant Pools.
Having been cooped up mostly in Indiana’s city of Bloomington until now, it’s not unusual to have never heard of them. The duo, brothers Bryan (vocals, guitar) and Doug (drummer) Enas, go to school at Indiana University (actually, Bryan just graduated this fall with a double major in English and Film) and play locally for the most part. Temporary Room does sound like an album you’d hear on college radio stations, but there is also a sad, wise and sincere sound to Bryan’s vocals that makes the record stand out.
While only using a fuzzed-out guitar and drums, the album has no problem sounding full and complicated. “Illusions” opens the album with repetitive electric guitar chords, occasionally switching up, and Bryan’s ghostly, haunting vocals. The fuzzy guitar ultimately overpowers the drums, climaxing toward the end of a song before a very quick drop-off in sound.
The pace picks up in “Dead Sailor” but the vocals remain low and slow, and the lyrics don’t exactly shout “party time”: “Do you think I’m a failure? / I’m your dead sailor.” The song never hits a stunning pinnacle of sound, but as a second track on the album it fits.
“Stun” is a most beautiful sound of feedback and fuzz. “Solitude” features an unfavorable echo after each recited line, and “Waveland,” the album’s closing song, lets Doug show what he can do with the drums.
Temporary Room is perfect for your fall soundtrack, which will be here before you know it. Stagnant Pools are definitely a band to keep on your radar for a while.