EP Review: Anticipation by Visitors

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Atlanta band Visitors have released a new EP titled Anticipation, a five-song kaleidoscopic mixture of jazz and the psychedelia. Core members of the band, Rasheeda Ali, Dan Carey Bailey, Gage Gilmore, Jeremi Johnson, Kenneth Kenito Murray, and Jared Pepper were joined by a long list of collaborators who came together to create a listening experience that, while diffusive, never completely detaches from its tether.

The first track “Origami,” immediately introduces the listener to the sensation of floating in open space, gently pulled in the directions of various sounds. A wandering bass line flows with jazz flute, mellow piano riffs, and chimes. The light percussion keeps you connected to a heartbeat, the only constant. Moreover, that steadiness is masterfully intermittent, giving you a chance to float but always with the opportunity of coming back to base. The vocals, by Shea Edman, when introduced, are just another ambient element that contributes to the auditory inundation.

On the other hand, the second track “The Plants Emerge,” features vocals that are less of an ornament and more of a guiding factor. The music flows around Saira Raza’s voice, appropriately ending the space voyage with the chant, “I can grow anywhere.” A pro-immigrant sentiment written by Raza, to describe the feeling of being able to prosper and grow anywhere she may find herself. 

With that sentiment, the album transitions and delves into “Where,” a song which is composed at its core by jazz. The cymbal and bass lines compete under a winding, erratic trombone solo by Danny Wytanis. Layered on top is an eerie vocal exchange between Chris Yonker and Adron creating an atmospheric tone which makes the finished product sound a bit like a Coltrane/Tycho love child.

The jazzy undertones continue in the penultimate track “Howard the Coward,” which also features a heavily distorted vocal mantra that gives the song a meditative, cleansing quality. The radial momentum of the song makes you feel a bit like you are going around and around in a washing machine for your mind.

The EP’s last track and my personal favorite “Hell,” opens up with a heavenly vocal solo, by Adron, in the tradition of an Indian hymn, and with the introduction of cymbals, bass, and wind instruments, eventually guides the listener through a series of moody influxes. Just as you are being sucked into a meditative trance by the singer, the song abruptly stops, and you are hit with the absence of sound...and all the energy has been sucked from the room.

Visitors next show is March 3rd at The Earl. You can check out the record on their Bandcamp and stay up to date with upcoming events on Facebook and Instagram.