Updated: Feb 20
Label: Town Fox Music
Non-Airable Tracks: GHOST, IT'S SO STUPID TO BE THAT MANIACAL, DVD, PSYCHOPATH
Brotherkenzie, also known for being a guitarist/vocalist in Hippo Campus, released "BLOODSUCKER" to show his fans just how much he has to offer the indie folk community. Not even six months after his last album release, he surprised everyone with a tracklist of thirteen songs. All of the tracks have a sense of belonging on "BLOODSUCKER" because it acts as a gateway to a newly discovered sound that allows Brotherkenzie to fully illustrate his talents. The majority of his discography focuses around difficult guitar licks and chord progressions that bring a calm folk/pop aspect to his work. However, this album branches more towards altered vocals, syths, and strings on certain tracks to encapsulate a shift in his work. These additions allow Brotherkenzie to fully accept his sound he wants to show the world: hints from Hippo Campus, his previous discography, and his growth to come.
The two songs that immediately spoke to me on my first listen were "DVD" and "TERROR". The first uses guitar as a way to infest your brain: it will genuinely not escape your mind. The beat continues to progress as the song goes on which slightly overpowers the vocals, but it's a perfect song to listen to while doing homework or going on a walk. The latter, on the other hand, reflects so many similarities to Hippo Campus I couldn't help but love it. It's very uplifting and light for Brotherkenzie who usually focuses on making slower and darker songs. This was really refreshing because it seemed like something that would be on Zach Sutton's (another member from Hippo Campus) solo project, Mono Moon.
On the contrary, I would have never expected the track "DON'T LOOK SO SAD" to be something Brotherkenzie produced. The continuous metronome adds an anxious feeling that matches the tone of the lyrics, but the instrumentals fight with the beat to create a masterpiece. The vocals are very gloomy and low which makes the strings in the background almost heavenly. All of the colliding sounds allow your mind to be transported to a place you thought you'd never see again. It's warm and comforting because you've been there before, but the feeling of being lost gets stronger as the song opts for more electrifying sounds as it goes on. All in all, it's mind blowing and I can't wait to hear more work from Brotherkenzie that is similar to this.
Reviewer's Note: I had discovered Brotherkenzie through recommendations that Spotify gave me, and only began to notice his work when I realized he's in Hippo Campus. That being said, Brotherkenzie's song "Stick Around" remains my number one most listened to song of all time. It's the first one of his I heard, and I couldn't get it out of my head even though it was unlike anything I would normally listen to on a daily basis. I have a strong appreciation for Nathan, and felt the need to include why I wanted to review another small artist.
1. Mono Moon
2. Hippo Campus
3. Lord Huron
3. MOUTHFUL (WHIPPING BOY)
Reviewers Name: Elizabeth McCluskey
Date of Review: February 16, 2023