Bruce Thomas’ musical influences run the gamut of genres, from punk rock to 60s psychedelic to experimental electronic to Kentucky bluegrass.
On Saturday, he’s releasing a new album at The Cabin called Bruce’s Lofi Timemachine. It’s a combination of two of his latest projects — an electric duo called Lofi Uppercut, and solo material from Bruce’s Bluegrass Timemachine.
“You have Lofi Uppercut which is a group of songs where it’s more indie, more 60s psychedelic jangle pop, with some grunge sentiments,” he told me over a beer. “Then you have solo acoustic, which is Bruce’s Bluegrass Timemachine.”
The album features seven songs that were produced over two different recording sessions. The solo material was recorded live at Simon Hunt’s small studio in Revelstoke. The electric material was recorded in Los Angeles with drummer Eddy Cola, an old friend of Thomas’ from his days playing in Montreal in the 90s.
The initial plan was to release three different albums (the third would have featured his experimental electronic songs) but instead he combined the two sessions together into one album.
On the album, the songs alternate between electric and acoustic. For the former, the songs are more catchy indie rock. The acoustic songs veer more towards folk than bluegrass. In both cases, the songs are led by Thomas’ pained, slightly slurred crooning, with the instrumentation taking a place in the background.
Thomas mentioned lots of names and styles while describing his music, from early REM and the B52s, to alternative singer-songwriter Vic Chestnutt and indie-pop singer Mac DeMarco. He brought up 80s jangle pop, 60s psychedelic, and early grunge.
At his album release show on Saturday, he’ll play his originals and bluegrass-style covers.
“I play Prince, I play The Shins, but I also play Gorodon Lightfood, the Byrds, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin – all in the idiom of the 3-4 waltz,” he said.
He will soon be taking his music to Europe where he’ll play either with a drummer or solo, depending on who comes along. He’ll also bring along his laptop, so he can perform his electronic music.
Bruce Thomas’ album release show is at The Cabin on Saturday, Aug. 6, at 7 p.m. You can listen to the album below: