Brothertiger is the project of electronic/synth-pop artist John Jagos from Brooklyn, NY. His previous albums are out on Mush Records, but Out of Touch is a new independent release, available digitally or on transparent green vinyl, with cover art by Jagos’s father, painted in the early 80s. This seems appropriate because, while you can apparently call the music “future pop” or “future wave”, it has a strong 80s feel, blended with contemporary electronic elements. Jagos’s bio lists influences such as Tears for Fears and Talk Talk, but also calls the sound an “earthly take on electronic music”, and I agree because the standard synths are grounded by pretty guitar lines and solid bass, giving the songs a warmer sound.
“Wake” is the standout track for me, thanks to a nice guitar hook and immediate danceability. “Beyond The Infinite” sounds like it could be a John Maus track; it’s catchy in a more laid-back way with a repetitive chorus, while “Fall Apart” is another upbeat song with a memorable melody. “Engulfed” and “Jungle Floor” capture a little of the feel of Peter Gabriel’s “Your Eyes”, while the title track is painfully reminiscent of something I can’t identify. (Maybe you can help – the album is currently streaming on Hype Machine.)
On the second half of the album, which is more melancholy, “Grenada” is notable for its nice melody, which reminds me a little of Death Cab for Cutie. Overall, the record has a charming, nostalgic dreaminess that warrants repeated listenings, and catching a live show: Brothertiger plays The Lost Room in Echo Park tomorrow, presented by Spaceland and The Lost Knight. Go and dance and sway like you’re at an 80s prom, or at least one in an 80s movie.
Image courtesy of Tell All Your Friends PR