Brooklyn based Whale Belly, has a strong, quirky appeal that has certainly caught my attention recently. In addition to releasing a free LP …The Smile At The End Of The Slope (they only ask that you share on Facebook and Twitter), the band created pictures to go along with each song. I can’t help but be curious about the minds who created such odd, dreamlike creatures.
“What About Time?” does an excellent job of setting the overall tone of the record. Transitioning from a more choral, instrumental beginning, the track ends with a simple acoustic piece and earnest vocals. From there, each song finds a way to diverge from the theme that was set before it. Though they keep a somewhat classic rock undertone throughout the album, Whale Belly moves effortlessly from sound to sound, tone to tone, and theme to theme.
One of the more simple tracks, “Caesar’s Crying”, is actually my favorite of the album. The acoustic guitar, combined with stellar harmonies (courtesy of Elizabeth Ziman of Elizabeth and the Catapult), creates a truly beautiful and humble sound. In fact, the harmonies on some of the songs are perhaps what stand out to me the most. The sincerity in those vocals is obvious throughout and adds a great deal to the connection that Whale Belly is capable of making with their listeners.
For those of you in New York, the band has one last show in December at Rockwood on the 17th. If you’re looking for an honest, energetic performance, be sure to stop by!