Cataclysmos

Ryne Ziemba

Moon Bus Records, 2019

http://www.ryneziemba.com

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 10/07/2019

A one-time long distance train hopper who ended up settling down in New York City, Ryne Ziemba found himself cutting his teeth in bands in the always flourishing Brooklyn area as a lead guitarist and synth player. Along the way, he learned much about producing and ended up releasing a well-received EP in 2016 titled my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Dirty Sunset #1.

“Trying Not To Try” starts Cataclysmos with acoustic strumming amid a spacey atmosphere, making for an interesting mix of singer-songwriter meets psych rock ambience. “Lazy Boy Style” follows with a deeper dive into warbling psych and prog rock where much appreciated humor is also present.

In the middle, “Love In The Asylum” offers us driving garage rock from Ziemba's unique angle, while “Message” resides closer to glam rock in a melodic haze of '80s sensibilities. “The Hook” follows and is one of the album's best, as cautious rhythms and strategic backing vocals help solidify the tune as a varied gem with timeless pop undertones.

Near the end, “Searching For” is a subdued moment of blurry beauty that erupts into loud, anthemic rock, and “Stand On Your Own” complements it well as electronic noises and detailed guitar work illustrate much skill present. “Lick Your Face” ends the affair with an adventurous and contemplative landscape, reminding us again of just how meticulous these tunes are. 

This is an extremely impressive first album. Ziemba doesn't allow his work to be easily classified; sure, surf rock, shoegaze, glam rock, and psychedelic sounds are all certainly in attendance, but never in any conventional ways. The eclectic nature of his work combined with the gritty recording and Ziemba's unique vision makes this debut album a real treat for music fans who really delve into the finite dynamics of an LP, and repeated listens never out welcome their stay either.

Rating: A-

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