Akron/Family, S/T II: The Cosmic Birth and Journey of Shinju TNT

It’s impossible to know what to expect from Akron/Family. Their cosmic brand of experimental rock has been delighting fans for close to ten years, and part of their allure is how well they keep those fans on their toes.

S/T II: The Cosmic Birth and Journey of Shinju TNT, their latest, only confirms this. The album was reportedly leaked twice leading upto its release, though it was later learnt that these leaks were orchestrated by the band as a means to simply tease fans. Incomplete and wrongly-mixed songs left many scratching their heads. But finally, there is light: S/T II is perhaps the band’s most engrossing and entertaining listens, solidifying their spot as one of the great, untouched gems within indie rock.

There is an unabashed sense of purpose throughout S/T II, heard on such jangly free-for-alls like “Another Sky,” one of the most affable tracks of 2011 or the fuzzed-out stomp of “Say What You Want To.” Sure, there band lets their freak flag fly on the spacey “Light Emerges,” but for the most part, it’s tracks like the ambient build of “Creator” that speak to the band’s desire to go big or go home. There is something for fans of strange pop and experimental folk on S/T II, and that’s what’s important here. Akron/Family, which long seemed content occupying a strange middle ground, are now aiming big and hitting the mark rather well.

By: Joshua Kloke – joshuakloke@hotmail.com

[Rating: 3.5/5]

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