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Slothrust (Dangerbird)

Through considering the existential questions around whether we are better off alone or exploring the connective depths binding us together spiritually arrives the faithfully honest and sonically beautiful forthcoming full-length, Parallel Timeline, by Leah Wellbaum and her band, the trio known as Slothrust. With support from drummer Will Gorin, and bassist/producer Kyle Bann, content that grapples with vulnerability turns assertive as Wellbaum allows her guitar to confidently fill in between the lines.

Opener “Cranium” eases us in with “Maggot Brain”- inspired guitar work while “The song addresses absurd ways to love someone or something, and feels very on-theme with things not always being what they appear at first,” says Wellbaum. “It also touches on tenderness being painful, which I think is very true of me as someone who has spent a lot of my life trying to be very tough.”

Then comes the hard-hitting “Once More For The Ocean” and we’re off on a journey vacillating between the rough and the tender, occasionally simultaneously as in the melodic ballads “Courtesy” and “King Arthur’s Seat,” both haunting in message and in aural beauty. Regarding the latter, Wellbaum states the song “addresses this core human wound that will come up time and time again for all of us, which is the feeling of being alone and separate and not really knowing what to do with that.”

Written with Donna Missal, “The Next Curse” comes on a like a blaze. Joined by Halestorm singer Lzzy Hale, the track addresses the disconnect within our collective lack of self-care as the world burns. The ocean is a recurring theme, appearing again in the acoustic “A Giant Swallow,” one of the only songs on the record with post-pandemic origins, an ask for a return to unity. “I want to feel more like the ocean than the drop of water,” says Wellbaum. “I didn't always want that. Now I do.”

Slothrust is supporting Manchester Orchestra throughout the fall, and “Once More For The Ocean” is hitting heavy rotation at WFUV, KCSN, Colorado Sound, WFPK, KXT, KROK, KRML, and more. Parallel Timeline is out September 10.


Photo by Adam Stone & Michelle Kwong

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