Unless you’ve been living completely outside of Louisville’s music scene for the past 2 years, you’ve probably heard of or at least seen Twin Limb around. If you haven’t heard of them, you are in for an otherworldly treat. They’ve been referred to as dream pop or dream folk, probably because their music takes you on a journey through outer space and when it ends you realize you’re only sitting in your living room. Songs like “Red Sun” and “The Weather” have a zero gravity feeling that is as physical as it is audible.
Twin Limb consist of Lacey Guthrie on vocals and accordion, MaryLiz Bender on drums and vocals, and Louisville legend Kevin Ratterman on guitar and other miscellaneous sounds. Kevin, in the past has been one of the best drummers in the city; now he’s the most unassuming guitar player. His style is not typical. His tone is always sitting perfectly in the open space of the songs, bridging the gaps with sounds that the average listener won’t even realize are coming from guitar. He’s also playing the “bass” notes via an organ pedal with his foot live. His playing is what elevates Haplo to a category all it’s own.
The standout track for me is “Sara.” Unlike the rest of the tracks on Haplo, MaryLiz takes over on lead vocals and it’s enchanting. The vocal melody is repetitive, the guitar is barely audible in the background, it’s incredibly emotional. The climax of the song is when MaryLiz references “shots” in the lyrics and proceeds to crack the snare as if it’s a gun. It’s jarring and a perfect connection between sound and words.
The album has songs you will recognize from their EP and past music videos. “Long Shadow” is a track I have been obsessed with since the release of the video and it’s finally available here. There is also a reworking of “Gold From Teeth” on this album. It’s the biggest departure from their sound here as it has more of a dance vibe. It’s upbeat and has a pulsing techno kick drum.
From start to finish Haplo is utterly amazing. There isn’t a bad track. There isn’t an abrasive sound. It’s 11 songs and 39 minutes of ear honey. A soothing, cosmic journey for your mind. Three artists converged and created something uniquely brilliant; how lucky we are to watch it happen in our city.
Listen to Haplo in it’s entirety here.