If most people were asked to write an album based on their day job, it is likely the results may not translate too well to the listener. In the case of Baltimore’ s Greg Hatem, ‘My Society’ is a musical reflection of his role as an aviculturist or – to put in his own words – “Ten songs about breeding and caring for finches and doves”. The results are wonderful.
Opener ‘Love Of Pearls’ comes across as a lost cousin of The Flaming Lips’ space rock sound but Hatem’s material is much more isolated in its outlook. Indeed, his best work here belongs to another world entirely. ‘Candling’ is covered in lush yet eerie atmospherics; switching effortlessly between vintage arrangements and futuristic noise, whilst the alien noise of ‘Grass Mask’ explores the often overlooked work of Avrocar. The excellent ‘Feather Fast’ contains a great chorus to top off the gorgeous combination of stuttering beats and warm electronica but better still is ‘Unbound’ which benefits from another heavenly chorus and inventive use of Eastern and African rhythms.
‘My Society’ is reminiscent of a time when “indie” was a by-word for mystery and individualism. Thanks to his unusual job, an air of detachment and unique vision, ‘My Society’ is not only one of the most unusual albums I’ve heard this year but also one of the best.
‘My Society’ Bandcamp
Avrocar, Glassacre, The Flaming Lips