Diminisher Imaginary Volcano

A decade after its bloom and burst remnants of the Elephant 6 collective experience continue to trickle down. The Diminisher (David McDonnell) is a third generation offspring, having roots in Olivia Tremor Control before forming Bablicon, a band that also included Neutral Milk Hotel’s Jeremy Barnes. As one might expect, instrumental diversity looms large in McDonnell’s pop structure, with bright harpsichord announcing the way on opener "Brooklyn’s Sinking.” More harpsichord and Hammond organ follows on "Snail Song” and "Trainstation,” tracks that unlock the garden path between Beatles originals (via Billy Preston keyboards) and the Apples in Stereo homage. Elements of early Julian Cope and mid-period XTC are also in evidence, especially in the bouncier moments and McDonnell’s warm high-tenor warble. A sunshiny psychedelia reigns over "A Subtle Sign,” calling to mind skies that might contain girls and precious stones. Happily, Imaginary Volcano is one of the better E6 alumni efforts, ranking up there with the aforementioned Jeremy Barnes’s solo work in A Hawk and a Handsaw. Who knows what other scene players might have a rucksack of tunes ready to go, too? Let’s keep an eye and an ear out, shall we? (No Sleep)