Outside of serving as Calliope’s guitarist, Victor Buell IV is a skilled videographer, a graphic designer, an artist, and a more-than-capable producer (who recorded, mixed, and mastered Calliope’s last record). Given his versatility, it was only a matter of time before he embarked on a new and immensely different sonic path. Self-described as his “studio project,” Buell, fittingly, gave the endeavor bearing his initials a truly person touch with his five-song debut.
Control is an understated adventure in ambiance. Buell’s lush, laconic lyrical and vocal contributions are sparing causeways to guitar work that ranges from empty and emotive (“Gaussian Blur”) to astoundingly technical (the almost flamenco strumming employed on “Wax Tears”). Within the span of five songs and roughly 18-minutes, Control plies The One AM Radio-like atmospherics and a southwest-facing nod to Calexico, along with Buell’s musicianship and production prowess. Lending Buell a hand in the otherwise-solo studio endeavor include Calliope bandmates Eric Gomoll (drums on “Gaussian Blur”) and Al Kraemer (alto sax on “Blue And Green”), as well as John Miller and Brandon Miller from YLLA. Though some of the members are the same, the calming compositions of VBIV’s strong debut is unlike anything you’ve heard from Buell before.
Before it’s released for a pay-what-you-want fee on VBIV’s Bandcamp page, stream Control in its entirety now, only at Milwaukee Record.