Hudson Bell, and I mean both the band and the man himself, is a perfect example of why I find spreading the word on deserving bands through these humble MP3 reviews so enjoyable. I’m not going to give you a biography paraphrased from the homepage or some magazine article, I’m not going to flaunt new review techniques that I think seem impressive, I’m just going to straight-up gush about Hudson Bell.
“Atlantis Nights” was my introduction to Hudson Bell, and after being drawn in initially by the whimsical song title and fantastic (and I really mean fantastic here) guitar work, I realized just how profoundly solid it was. It had that quality that’s incredibly hard to find in modern songs – it struck a perfect balance between fun popcorn rock that isn’t looking to change your life and the kind of seriously deep songwriting that pulls you in even after repeated listens. Needless to say, I was obsessed right off the bat. A purchase of the entire When the Sun is the Moon album soon followed, and I’ve never looked back, even when some of the songs cruise by the “damn, that’s a long song” seven-minute mark. Trust me, those seven minutes will be denser and more exciting than most of what you’ve heard so far this year.
Pavement, Built to Spill, and Modest Mouse all come to mind because of how widely appealing Hudson Bell’s music is; there’s very little to dislike here, between the awesome, fuzzed-out guitar arrangements, relentlessly imaginative lyrics (“Atlantis / How does it come to this? / I sense you in a rift / and I can’t let you go”), and, most importantly, how utterly consistent all of this goodness is. Letting Hudson Bell slip any further under the radar would be a pretty serious crime to anyone with ears and an imagination. Couldn’t be more recommended.