THE WASHBOARD ABS “Lowlight Visions” (Antiquated Future)

Finally, a band that truly speaks to me! The Washboard Abs, clearly inspired by my indelible six-pack, make music for the athletically inclined. Actually, that’s probably not true at all. As I listen, they seem more geared for the bookworm set, the library crawlers intent on teasing out every piece of knowledge and wisdom they can from the tomes around them. Actually, if I’m honest, I’m kind of a bookworm myself anyway, not some gym-haunting meathead who’s more interested in protein shakes than his emotional state. I mean, look at me – writing constantly about music. You think Lou Ferrigno ever did that?

But my abs. Oh, my abs.

Anyway, let’s forget about all the crunches I do and focus instead on “Lowlight Visions,” a dreamy indie rock excursion down paths blazed by Archer Prewitt and Sam Prekop and Prewitt-and-Prekop bands (like, uh, the Sea and Cake) and decidedly non-Prewitt-and-Prekop bands like Real Estate and even non-electronic and pretty Radiohead. It wouldn’t surprise me if it came out that the Washboard Abs played instruments made out of clouds instead of conventional instrument material, such is the weightlessness of their sound (which is reinforced by images of clouds on the cover). So if you’re in the market for super-wistful and feather-lite songs about love and fear (sadly, this record was conceived in the midst of frontperson Clarke Sondermann’s experience of becoming the primary caregiver to his partner following a cancer diagnosis), then the Washboard Abs are for you. And you won’t even have to bench press anything to get into it! You’ll actually find yourself uplifted in spirit more than anything.