When it comes to music, the word “psychedelic” often means “loud, distorted, and reverb-drenched.” But there’s another psych world out there, a psych world where the volume is turned down and the lights are dimmed, and where soul-baring vocals cut through the air. That’s the realm occupied by Milwaukee’s Adorner.
Formed in late 2020, the band specializes in “indie rock with a poetic disposition, combining psychedelic edge with soulful emotion.” That description proves apt on a self-titled EP released in May. The five-song Adorner opens with a loose and hypnotic mix of piano and heartbeat-drums. The track, “Sand,” then slows down a bit and gives way to the stellar and deeply felt vocals of Madeline Stadel. “I feel that the Earth is made of sand” she sings on the song’s chorus before things swell and swirl off into a psychedelic haze. It’s a sound that’s easy to get lost in.
The rest of the EP is equally evocative. “Activoto” adds more guitar to the mix, “Right Time / All The Time” unfolds like a melancholy anime, “End Of My Rope” marches with a military-like precision, and the nearly six-minute “Venus” ends with a howl. Dreamy, impassioned, and agreeably rough around the edges (and, yes, psychedelic), both Adorner and Adorner are unique and powerful additions to Milwaukee music.
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