It all started for Brando Albers, when he was nine years old, and his father bought their very first computer. For Brando’s brothers it was the ultimate video game source but for him it was much more. He started using the wave sound and cutting up bits of songs and looping them. At age 10 his grandfather let him borrow an old banged up six string so Brando could learn how to play. His mother then placed him into guitar classes, just to see if he would stick with it. Brando was in love with it, and continued practicing until he surpassed his friends.
At 14, he purchased his first home production software program which basically allowed him to create his own sound and style, experimenting with new ways to mix and play his instruments. It wasn’t until 2004 when he realized his calling was clear. A friend forgot a CD at his house, that at first he found odd, but after listening to it, Brando has been obsessed with the lo-fi, indie pop-rock sound ever since.
In the past Brando has been involved in several music projects, including Julian Alexander Barret, The Clandestine and My Dearly Forgotten. Since then, Brando has embarked on his own solo project, and began writing and recording his album, “Fading Away,” toward the end of 2008, finally finishing it in November of 2012.
The music is deceptively simple and beautiful. Musically and lyrically, the album is very real. The music creates a soft bed upon which Brando’s voice floats over, lands on, and sinks into. The vocal performance is in stark contrast to the pop-vocal performances of today. Brando whispers his laments in our collective ears, rather than scream at us. It is a very bold and personal statement.
“Fading Away,” while not being a concept album as such, nonetheless seems to follow the appropriate rules for becoming a concept album. The first two songs, “Future World” and “Nothing Left To Be Afraid Of,” sets up the mood and the situation, as Brando accompanies you into his bittersweet, melancholy world, invoking you to hang on and allow his emotions to touch you.
There is emotion in every note and word, and between the synthesized bars of pain and sadness there is beauty and even joy. All these different components come together to create something unique and truly honest. The album seems to be a personal look into Brando Albers’ emotions and inner thoughts.
What gives this album it’s focus, depth, and undeniable power is Brando’s ability to convey a true and inexorable sense of sincerity. He allows consistency to build a strong case. He never strays far from the quietly, disturbed simmer that opens on “Lakes Of Burden” and drifts on to more ethereal sounding songs like “Wash Away Your Tears,” “Your Kisses Are Mine” and the eleven minute title-track “Fading Away.”
Glitched and reverent keyboard, guitar and percussion sounds, follow Brando along his journey through 10 electronically-based lo-fi tracks. His tone and manner borders on the sad, thoughtful and mellow. Though ‘sad’, in this case, is never depressing.
Brando Albers is a voice that is calling out and observing life’s signals. He sings and invokes, while reminiscing over the footprints of the past and the burdens of the future. It is a glance into human emotions that takes you to an atmosphere so clearly painted by Brando.
At the end, everything on the album flows together, and it sounds so effortless, that it pulls you deep into Brando Alber’s own private world, until you are isolated with his gently reverberated voice, in a surrounding microcosm of electronic sounds, until slowly…“Fading Away”.
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