As countless sci-fi flicks illustrate, messing with the space-time continuum often leaves a traveler in a place they don't recognize as their desired destination. The Time Machine, Shoulder Voices' fourth full-length album, was catalyzed by Little Bobby Tucker's desire to move past a decade-old heartache.
Ten years ago, Tucker moved to Burque with a girl and got his heart broken. Dealing with the resulting loneliness in an unfamiliar place led him to start a band. When he began composing this album last year, he went back there. Soon after he fell in and out of love again.
Romantic trials aren't the only hurdles Tucker faced in the past six months. A childhood friend died of brain cancer, a close friend committed suicide, a musical idol he’d finally met in person (The Monkees' Davy Jones) passed and he buried his canine best friend. All that grief and loss influenced the album's creation. He says it's the most personal, emotional record the band has ever made and—even though it's painful for him to listen to—it's his favorite.
The Time Machine is 11 tracks of psychedelic freak-out music laced with found sound samples ranging from answering machine messages to religious talk radio. Instrumentation and vocal harmonies throughout are tightly arranged, and founding guitarist The Musk's performance is of particular note. The sound is diverse, with three of seven members—Little Bobby, Zac Actually Does and Ms. Marie—switch-hitting as lyricist, composer and lead vocalist. Lyrics reference fear, love, beauty, forgiveness, physics and objectification. The album stands on its own, but attendance at a fake-