Music, Print, Reviews November 1, 2017

Album Review: The Great Aerodome– Happy Birthday to Me, I Guess

by Noel Billups

Genre-bending rockers, The Great Aerodrome knock it out of the park with their debut album Happy Birthday to Me, I Guess. The band is comprised of members: Justin Maul, Philip Sellabarger and Michael Ross, but they have a larger than life sound. Combining elements of punk, dance-rock and metal makes for a high energy album that is fun to listen to from start to finish.

The opening track “Slow Poison” is everything but slow; it almost immediately grabs your attention and hooks you in with an infectious drum beat. Something this band does is incorporate synths and keys into their guitar-driven sound without it sounding out of place or too cheesy. This song is a great example as it features a portamento lead synth, electric piano, and piano. The synth also adds a dance element to the song while the piano is featured during the bridge, sounding like something straight out of a haunted carnival.

Just past the halfway point of the album, the band dials it back slightly with “River.” This song is in no way a reggae song but they bring in a little bit of that vibe with guitar chords with a triplet delay. Coming in at 5:45, it’s the longest track on the record but the payoff is definitely worth it. The vocal performance starting just past the three minute mark is absolutely stellar and full of rawness and emotion.

This is just a small taste of the album. If you want the whole picture you’ll have to pick yourself up a copy. From the great drum, bass and guitar work, to the solid songwriting and vocals, this band is definitely a power trio and a force to be reckoned with.