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12/5: The Electric Arch
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12/5/19:
Another side

James Marler is an English professor at Tulane. And he's better known as the leader of Rotary Downs. Which is to say. . .well, you know. He wrote some songs that he didn't think fit that band, and so he recorded them and called the project the Electric Arch.



The Electric Arch
Out of Range
(self-released)

He did have some help from his brother Trey, members of the Rotary Downs and other friends. So it's not a one-man effort. But these songs do have the eccentricity that is a prime characteristic of such projects. Marler's sense of melody is off-kilter, and he populates his songs with sounds that aren't quite "right". Like fuzzing out the drums and then leaving the rest of the sound pristinely clean. Or modulating the sound of the various keyboards as the lines move.

So, yes, very much a mid-90s "modern rock" feel. This is a looser feel than Rotary Downs, but the differences are greater than that. Marler sounds like he's having fun seeing what's possible, both in writing and production.

A most accessible sort of experimentation. The Electric Arch may be something on the side, but here's to hoping Marler finds a few songs that don't fit in the future. A loopy, lovely set.