By Alexandra Hall
For Aidan Lamb, also known as Analog Kid, his music journey started on the couch. Before he could really remember anything, Lamb supposedly picked up the couch cushion and began strumming it like a guitar after seeing someone on TV doing it. Years later, he traded out the couch cushion for a real guitar.
In January, Lamb released his self-titled debut psychedelic album. And after a listen, the least likely influence you may detect is twenty one pilots.
“Their whole imagery was so emotional,” Lamb said. “It was the first very emotional music that I listened to. I knew Rush and all these 70s rock bands, but twenty one pilots was the first band that ever made me actually feel something.”
After emotion comes the second most important part of making music to Lamb: timelessness.
“I’m trying to play catch up with myself a lot of the time,” Lamb said. “The creative process for me always stems from repetition. Sometimes I’ll have an idea right before I go to sleep and I’ll fall asleep before writing it down— you can’t always rely on those moments. It’s more the repetitive process of banging it out. Developing something over and over until it gets smooth.”
The record would’ve stayed on his laptop if it weren’t for a friend who encouraged Lamb. In an experience most bands and creative folk can relate to, it came about because of an evergreen challenge: “wouldn’t it be funny if we did?”
Lamb began playing in bands like Wishmire and Connor Kelly & the Time Warp around 2017, and both projects made Lamb realize the importance that working with others has on art.
“I went so hard working and playing with other people,” Lamb said. “I also had this yearning to have a monopoly over my own music and be entirely in control. And after this album, I’m learning now that I think that is better off just as a fantasy. I think it helps to have a bit of randomness and people to bounce ideas off of instead of trying to build a house and starting from the foundation completely alone.”
Through Analog Kid, Lamb was able to assess both equations of working on creative projects alone and with groups. While solo work grants complete autonomy and control, group gigs offer varied creative voices to build something with.
“I’m trying to move towards a bit of a middle ground and bridge between the two,” Lamb said. “Because I really like being able to wear all of the hats and feeling proud of what I can put out; but, even my own mind has its own limitations and I can’t be 100% all of the time.”
As the album cover may suggest, the album is nothing short of a trip. Far more impressive when you know that it’s a solo project, Analog Kid seems like it’s a collection of songs that should be played behind a protagonist in a film when he drops his first tab of acid. It’s sonically dynamic, with steady bass, playful riffs, and sound effects that sound both straight from the ’70s and borderline cartoonish.
Time is an afterthought in Analog Kid. You’ve got seven minute tracks like “Emphatical Proclamation” that has bass resemblant of a heartbeat on a few too many Red Bulls and feathery guitar work that guides you through the song. There’s thirty second songs like “Give Him Some Space” that are darker and bridge the gap between the light “Lame Impala” and the latter few songs on the album that seem like a playground where Lamb shows his best tricks.
Analog Kid is a maze of layers. Even though the tracks are relatively distinctive, it almost feels like one long song twisted in thirteen different ways.
“It’s fun to just pretend to be a bunch of different people,” Lamb said. “I spent multiple nights just playing all the different parts on top of each other, sort of simulating a band that wasn’t there. It was just me playing over myself.”
Analog Kid is an impressive first step, both technically and spiritually, for Lamb. After our interview, Lamb was headed to go record some new tracks for another project he’s already working on. I wouldn’t recommend looking into any mirrors while listening, though. Just to be safe.
Until next time,