12 Songs | MR093 | Release Date 2016
Goldmine evokes earned grit. It’s a fitting title for the debut LP from Bombay Harambee, of Little Rock, Ark., workplace of Charles Portis. This record blazes a path of arresting and literate post-punk and lives up to the bold decree of the album’s sinister pulp cover: “42 Minutes of Western Action!”
From its opening feedback buzz Goldmine swerves into the churning current of “Interval,” declaring that “Now’s it’s time to stupefy and wonder.” Theirs is a familiar sound but never a game of retread. It seeps up from the fertile eighties and early nineties that once nurtured luminaries like Pavement and Sonic Youth.
Formed by Alexander Jones and Trent Whitehead in 2013, the band has undergone a transformation with the additions of Tyler Nance on drums and Ryker Horn on bass. Recorded at Fellowship Hall Sound with Jim Dickinson disciple Jason Weinheimer, Goldmine was crafted and honed over the last year and a half as the band played through the south and up the east coast. Mastering was handled by Carl Saff.
Released on Max Recordings, Goldmine is available on digital and CD formats, but the ideal medium is vinyl. “I love how vinyl forces a certain process upon the listener. Ideally, each side should flow such that people don’t feel compelled to get up and change the record,” principal songwriter Jones says. “This record is meant to be heard at high volume in a room filled with people.”
Jones draws upon his time spent as a grad student wandering the civil war battlegrounds of Virginia with a “Broken Hand”, nurturing a fascination with the monumental gaffes and shoestring policy of America’s nuclear arsenal (“Check, Check, Checkmate”), and all the while exploring the seedy, southern tableau of Little Rock. The city and its famed late night haunt “Midtown” earn fitting homage, roasting slow in self-loathing and collateral bar damage that recur and re-haunt.
The vivid spaghetti western design penned by Fayetteville artist Gustav Carlson (Backwood Goat, Tourist Unknown), recalls a derailed train in the high buffalo era. The liner note treasure map twists Little Rock to invite a closer look. Goldmine tells a story which may evade dot-connection on the first listen, and that may be the point. The album depicts subjects most of us would rather avoid in polite company. Undeterred, Bombay Harambee tacks them all to the wall.
Limited vinyl pressing (+ digital download) on colored vinyl in a gatefold jacket.
Also available on CD.
2. Bombed The Polygraph
4. Dotted Line
5. Commotion Notion
6. Stringing Sentences
7. Check, Check, Checkmate
8. Blue Balloon
11. Broken Hand
12. WZTV Chanel 5