Vinyl Williams: Brunei Williams

BruneiComing off of his diverse 2015 record, “Into”, Vinyl Williams is back for more in a unique, dirty, and oh-so-gritty offering in “Brunei.” This is a full length effort by Williams, with only one track falling under the three minute mark on this eleven track masterpiece. Lo-fi synth drones, tight drum beats, and expansive, reverb-soaked soundscapes dominate much of the record to create a mix that falls somewhere in between Tame Impala and Washed Out.

This is So-Cal psychedelia at its finest, marking the most polished, focused effort of Williams’ career. From the deliberate drum buildup in “Feedback Delicates,” to the spongy guitar chords in “L’Quasar,” the album contains some really solid elements that just fit. “Emerald Isles” sets the bar for the entire record, with fuzzed out bass leads laying the foundation for the punchy, shifty percussion that repeatedly crosses time signatures. This is psych rock done right. Throughout the eleven tracks, much of the album can be described between two types of sounds: one that offers ethereal, synth-heavy dreamscapes next to one with a more gritty, psych rock. The album’s consistency ultimately begins to become one of the biggest flaws in the record, with little left to surprise listeners as the album rolls through.

Brunei is a mature effort by Williams, and indicates a much more deliberate focus compared to the up-and-coming artist’s past. While the record doesn’t do enough to feel all that ambitious, it takes the immediate expectations set from the first track and polishes them exactly enough by the conclusion.

Recommended for four week rotation.

Recommended If You Like: Tame Impala, Washed Out, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard,
Recommended Tracks: 1 (Emerald Isles), 2 (Feedback Delicates), 3 (L’Quasar)
Do Not Play: All Clean
Written by Alex Murray on 09/01/2016