This weekend I made an effort to sit down and listen to a bunch of albums that I have been meaning to get around to. I would much rather hear an album in its entirety, all at once, than to skip around or listen to it in parts. So if I can't do it all at once I'll usually wait until the time is right. I had gotten all the way through three albums and had another a few more staring me in the face when the debut album from Aspen Woods came up in the rotation. I took one look at it, saw that most of the songs were around eight minutes long, and immediately said there's no way I can focus on something this big right now.
Once I got around to it I knew within the first few songs that it wasn't daunting at all. All of the songs on the album are long, most around eight minutes, but they always feel like they're constantly going somewhere, moving with a subtlety that keeps everything smooth. The album takes a while to unfold, but it's pretty good once it does. I have seen it labeled psychedelic shoegaze, which is better than it sounds. It kind of sounds like Black Rebel Motorcycle Club got together with the Black Angels and decided to make a shoegaze album. Much of it was recorded live, which gives everything a good feel and keeps the large spaces together. An enjoyable listen if you've got the time, and a solid debut. Aspen Woods are from Bristol, UK.