Of all the bands to emerge from the mid- to late-aughts “shitgaze” explosion in Columbus, Ohio, I loved Times New Viking the best. Despite breaking up a decade ago, they still get plenty of rotation on my home stereo. This lo-fi, no-frills trio’s records are hyperactive, sloppy, and noisy as hell—at times they’re unintelligible, but somehow their melodic pop genius shines through the cacophony. When Times New Viking called it a day, the members took on other projects, often detouring far from their prior band’s sound: guitarist Jared Philips formed challenging experimental indie duo Counter Intuits with Columbus punk legend Ron House, while lead singer and drummer Adam Elliot linked up with his brother Kevin to form the catchy yet conventional indie-pop outfit Connections.
Adam’s latest project as a vocalist is Long Odds, and on their new full-length, Fine Thread (released May 31 on Bandcamp), he gets back in touch with the obtuse, damaged catchiness of Times New Viking. Long Odds aren’t as shambolic or as reckless-sounding as TNV, and they flesh out their sonic palette with pianos, dual guitars, and a thoughtful production style that that contrasts dramatically with TNV’s blown-out, lo-fi aesthetic. But much like their home-state heroes Guided by Voices, Long Odds make songs that are raw, honest, sad, desperate, simple, and beautiful. Even with a more reined-in and subdued approach, Elliot can still capture his untouchable hooks through a fractured lens.
Long Odds’ Fine Threads is available through Bandcamp.
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