Upon approaching Gregory Rhodes, one must be ready to absorb the peculiar and complex artistry crafted by the Alaskan musician. Motivated on pursuing his own musical style, he delivers eclectic and fusion material often balanced between prog-rock, power-pop and modern indie elements. Take ‘The Dearly Departed and the Recently Returned’, Rhodes’ latest effort. Collecting nine tracks, the album is the perfect introduction to the project, and – potentially – its most effective manifesto. Featuring a wide range of instruments, including all types of guitars, strings, keys and percussions, the record is a very personal work. All instruments were played and recorded by Rhodes himself, showcasing the impressive musicianship he has to offer.
At the heart of ‘The Dearly Departed and the Recently Returned’ is a deep and abiding sense of introspection. Beginning with the elegiac first track – ‘The Dearly Departed,’ – the album takes listeners on a journey through a lifetime in reverse, ending with ‘The Recently Returned’ as a rebirth into a strange new consciousness. Rhodes’ lyrics are deeply personal, exploring hidden worlds, shifting narratives, archetypal imagery, and religious longing. To note, ‘Love Song for Catherine’ is an honest and heartfelt tribute to Rhodes’ wife.
In describing his music, Rhodes explains he’s seeking to “bring the unconscious world into daylight, and watch abstract characters fumble their ways around.” This ethos is evident throughout The Dearly Departed and the Recently Returned, which is a work of art that is at once deeply personal and universally resonant.
Recommended! Discover ‘The Dearly Departed and the Recently Returned’ on Spotify: