Needle Drop: Historian, Spiral Again

PHOTO: ANNA MARIA LOPEZ | The work of Los Angeles psych outfit Historian is moody, strange, and strikingly poignant.

Five releases in, it’s now clear that a Historian album is always a cohesive work where the sum is greater than the parts. Spiral Again is the newest edition to their catalog, and possibly the most personal and paired down release to date. Glowing organs have replaced the full blown orchestral arrangements which usually accompany the shamanistic poetry of band spearhead Chris Karman, resulting in a level of intimacy that previous records failed to capture.

Karman has a knack for turning a phrase, and his doomsday prophesies are often imbued with grace notes of beauty and hope. The music is couched in warm analog production, inviting the listener to melt away in the blissful repose of a man who is dealing with his worldly anxiety in the most elegant of ways. According to Karman, “Spiral Again is really my attempt at capturing the feeling I get, alone in the middle of the night. There’s an air of mystery, sadness, longing, and tinge of joy. It’s a fairly indescribable moment that I feel I was able to tap and sustain for an entire record.”

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