Suntrodden – Suntrodden III

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If you aren’t aware of Suntrodden yet, you may want to introduce yourself with their third album, Suntrodden III. The album consists of five songs, the first of which is titled “There’s A Place” and offers a gentle strolling tune with dreamy, mesmerizing, celestial vocals. This song is calming and relaxing. “There’s a Place” is the kind of song you could listen to while relaxing in your yard, or spending a day at the beach. As it draws to a close, you feel airy and relaxed. This leads you to their second track, “Pure.”

“Pure” felt more like a mellow, jam-band song; the kind of thing that would make great background music to a day in the sun with friends and drinks. The vocals on this track are heavier and less airy than the previous track, shaping the overall flavor of the song to something more playful and less astral.

“Moonflower,” the third track on the album, takes you on a ride to a new set of sounds. Opening on a piano solo, the song lulls you into its world before unleashing a collection of instruments while taking you on a ride through a dream-like state. The vocals on this song stood out more than the vocals on the previous song, making them seem more important. They drift along with the music and carry you to each oncoming transition. As the song draws near the end, the tone warms and becomes more urgent, drawing you to the following track.
Track four, “Never Again,” opens strong and offers the right amount of energy following the ending to “Moonflower.” The vocals blend with the guitar to almost form one sound in a way that draws you in. “Never Again” would make a wonderful background to a warm, summer day at the park.
The final song on Suntrodden III, “The End (Haunt Me)” opens with calming, soothing music and vocals that felt almost like a lullaby for adults. Ghostly tones ramp up as they introduce you to the loving vocals. The vocals bring you in and leave you feeling an uncanny tension before picking up pace and following through to a fulfilling ending.

With music that draws from Beach House, Radio Head and Elliott Smith, you might not expect a band as unique and dreamy. Though I enjoyed the entire album a great deal, I felt the most entranced by “Moonflower.” It feels like the kind of song that will continue to travel with you for months, or even years to come.

Suntrodden is one man, Erik Stephansson, from Atlanta, who brings his own brand of musical sound combined with inspiration from the Beach Boys with hints of Radiohead and Nirvana. This is one of three albums from Mr. Stephansson and I would expect that we would see many more to come. After hearing Suntrodden III, I plan to pick up Suntrodden II and Suntrodden as soon as I can.

Overall, I enjoyed this album a great deal I give it 9 out of 10 stars.

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Sarah Scharnweber Legge