1st Base Runner-Night Stalker | When the keys count
The flow of dark wave can be felt again, with 1st Base Runner. Tim Hussman is the mastermind behind this project, the synth directions coming from shoegaze to alt-rock and in some places even an industrial rock sound. Night Stalker is the latest project from this ideology. The EP has 4 immersive songs, tracks that transport you to the miracle age of analogue.
In the Neighborhood is the song that drops you into this crystal case, to gaze out of. The synth leads are the defining flow, they create a stepping stone of counting the beat, the rhythm that can be understood. The overlapping layers create a sense of mild hysteria, something that might have been the directive. As one roulette completes, the vocals want to take you to the hypnotic world crafted by 1st Base Runner.
Dark Drive through the Canyon is the next song, again building from silence. These slow builds really help dissolve into the essence of the song, rather than bleed over from the last. The pinnacle is something you have to gradually climb to, the incline built buy the steps of the synth progressing consecutively. The pop core is heard, yet is forms this praxis of surreal oscillation, each aspect of it peeling apart to bring forward another layer.
Navigating the analog abyss
The title track is next, a song we have actively built towards. Like the theme and name, it hides in plain sight. The birth of it is from small, snippets of musical information. Like Joy Division, you can hear the New Wave influences. The lead from the synth is where the industrial impact can be felt. The beat makes it feel like The Fragile era of Nine Inch Nails. The repetitive, eerie nature of the track is reiterated as the instrumental folds over.
The Serpent and Space is devoid of percussion. It is here, you are completely invested in the lyrics. They draw you in, the sense of importance is apparent and subliminal. The vocals change shape for this track, like smoke in a jar. Floating through this abyss of synth sounds and silence, it heals and grows.
This is a near perfect ending to an album that tantalizes. It forces you to think. Essentially, with the overload of analog, you feel, maybe more than you ever would with live instruments. It is this juxtaposition that is highlighted so well. This is where the genius of 1st Base Runner lies. Listen to the EP here: