FarnhamExploding in Sound Records
By AJ Phink
Baked have returned, the Brooklyn quintet will release their sophomore album, Farnham, on February 24th via Exploding In Sound Records. A lot has changed since the release of their debut full length, Debt, as members have changed, and with it their sound has evolved. The sonic world of Baked has grown, and with it comes a diverse record, drifting between enormous wall of sound guitars, dark fuzz, dusty country ballads and flashes of deviant post punk all of which is wrapped up in a suspiciously hazy aura that suggests the album was born of evenings in in a smokey twilight world of altered states. Baked have not made an album that is designed to produce hit singles and stand out tracks, although there are songs that do stand out on their own, this is an album made to be experienced as a twisted late night soundscape.
AA kick starts Farnham with a twisted driving rhythm and insistent vocal delivery all topped with off with some distorted treble laced lead guitar, the following track, Wolf, takes the album down into drawled hazy space that slowly fades towards the event horizon. After the dark fuzz of the opening duo the album veers off into the desert for the dark mescalin inspired Amy Rots that abruptly segues into Stay, the first track that features Isabella Mingione on lead vocal, the sweet harmony vocals juxtapose the dark twisted country vibe on this number perfectly. The album continues to veer wildly in styles, alternating between the dark fuzzy elements, haunted distorted reflections of country, lysergic inspired psyche and troubled ballads, these disperate styles are drawn together to create a unique sophomore album, one that I can confidently predict will be amongst my favourite releases from 2017.
If ever a band was the natural successor to the diverse strangeness of the Butthole Surfers, then I would say Baked have taken on that mantle with their latest release. Farnham is the most unpredictable album I’ve reviewed this year, like their aforementioned forefathers the influences on this album are so widespread this is an album that is impossible to categorise, but it is one that borders on perfection, whether it’s the dark haunting country influence or the driving substance fuelled numbers, Baked have made an album that few will surpass in 2017 and this is a release I would recommend to anyone who has a love for the strange, hazy and original.
Farnham can be pre-ordered here