Written by: Maria Arroyo
Alt-electronic band, Picture One, shares its brand new album, Across The Depths of Seven Lakes. Self-produced by Thomas Barnwell, the album is unlike any others. There’s a darker feeling surrounding the album, with interesting instrumentation and really neat production ideas. Picture One describes their sound as “music that breaks through the often dark backdrop of the lyrical content, with a dance-y and self-aware 80’s synth-pop vibe accentuated by chilly post-punk soundscapes… It fuses bright neon-soaked new wave accents and splashes each cosmic arch with a power-pop kick.”
Picture One explains that this album is “aware of the mercurial nature of personal tragedy, which can simultaneously appear both as dark impassable chasms, and as small puddles that can be easily splashed away. These songs invite us to explore and question this dichotomy at every turn without denying either the pain of everyday tragedies nor the miracle of the very human ability to overcome…” I think the idea of this album coming out at the time that it did really poses a huge advantage for the group.
The opening song “Resolute: The Absolute” showcases the attention to detail throughout the album. There’s a lot of focus in the rhythmic sections, as well as creating a very specific ambiance that complements their album as a whole. The production value in this song is even higher for me because of the sound traveling from one ear to the other. The panning in this song is technically amazing and really opened my ears even more. “Cycle Of Belief” is one of the first singles from this album that they shared with their fans. The song has a grittier sound to it, with some influences from alternative rock, with hints of a softer sound. The softer parts of the song come into play in the piano arrangement, and even in the ambient setting in the background.
Their next song is probably my favorite of the album. “Tomorrow’s Fool” started off with this voice narrator that mimicked an old movie, which slid straight into this intense instrumentation. This was another song that showcased Barnwell’s production skills with that same panning technique to have sound travel from one side to the other. They were able to create a very larger-than-life sound that really stuck with me. “Love Spell” is a nice blend of their darker sound, but with higher energy in the background. The band describes this song as a metaphor for “wanting to do something proactive when you feel like things are out of your control…” which is pretty ironic for the situation we are all in now.
“Winter’s Kiss” also carries that same level of energy throughout the song, but with a more aggressive approach. The song felt a little too close to the choppy side for me, but the rhythm stayed consistent throughout. There is also a stronger pull to their techno and electronic influences that added a bit of variety to the song. The last few songs show different musical abilities these guys have under their belt. “Lily Pad” had a really cool instrumental outro, and really created a much-needed change of pace for the album. Their song “Chaser of The World” also has a more aggressive side to it, similar to “Winter’s Kiss.”
Keep up with Picture One as they push their musical boundaries and continue to surprise people with their unique and one-of-a-kind sound!
Connect with Picture One