|Photo by Jeanine Caron|
One of the hardest things to process is the unexpected death of a loved one – and it’s even harder when it’s not the loss of one person but the loss of an entire family. Life is defined by one’s own set of concrete facts and beliefs – those things that help a person make sense of the world. Losing that sense of understanding is utterly devastating as the world you knew is no longer a home but a new, almost foreign place. It’s one of the harder lessons that life deals out, and something that provokes both change and maturation.
In 2008, Washington, D.C.-based Drop Electric were forced to make sense out of a horrible, shocking tragedy. That year, the family of the band’s now former lead singer, Padma Soundararajan, died in a terrible car accident while on pilgrimage in India. The relationship that’s forged between the individuals that make up a band is an incredibly close one; your bandmates are not just friends, they are a second family. So, when Soundararajan learned what had happened to her family in India, Ramtin Arablouei (drums), David Garber (keys), Neel Singh (guitar), Sho Fujiwara (guitar) and Patrick Morris (visuals) all felt connected to the loss. Her pain and troubling emotions were, by extension, felt by all of Drop Electric.
Soundararajan left the band, but the remaining members soldiered on to craft something that captured the feelings that sprouted in the aftermath of the accident. The result of their journey is documented in the fittingly titled Finding Color In the Ashes. The album finds the band repurposing the monumental, uplifting power of post-rock as a beacon of hope and faith. Whether it’s a tidal wave of distorted chords or the distant, reverb-dressed ring-outs, Drop Electric adroitly express the mountainous highs and bottomless lows that accompany a soul’s internal struggle to find meaning and footing on an Earth that seemingly contains nothing of believable certainty.
Songs like the spiritual, stirring “Bankroll Hominid” and the soaring, uninhibited “What Now, of Paradise?” perfectly capture the journey of the band's collective spirit to overcome the pain and break free from the emotional weight. And on the other hand, songs such as the haunting, cavernous “Brooklyn’s Nightmare” and the crushing, explosive “Bones Beneath the Bridges” play more to the themes of loneliness and loss. Together, the album embodies a soulful journey that everyone can relate to and connect with, because what powers the massive sound of Finding Color In the Ashes is a universal bond forged through the intrinsic human emotions that exist in us all – no matter the race, culture, or nation.
Here is a celebration of life and the immortality of spirit. Here, the strength and beauty lie in the album's ability to restore hope and happiness.
DOWNLOAD: Drop Electric - Finding Color In the Ashes*
*This link is directly from the band. They are offering the album up for free download. Please share and enjoy it.