Indigenous Robot opens its fourth album with a slow instrumental, anchored by a rudimentary guitar riff. Closed lips here is a sign of restraint, as the band bares its teeth the rest of the album.
The Denver band’s seven-song effort, Revolting, feels like vampire-haunted woods at twilight. Rock has always been at home in such a place, and Robot sounds programmed to translate its eerie seductiveness into music. The band does this with dirt-smeared guitars, thorny vocals, storm-cloud drums and ghostly synths. But for all its barbs, the message isn’t menacing. The music beckons.
A songwriting device the band has mastered is the mid-song beat switch, heard several places on Revolting, and it’s always a well-placed change of pace. “Blast Off” starts slow, as if doing a systems check, then the rockets kick in and it’s up and away. An even more effective beat switch can be heard on the track, “Like a Mouse,” which starts as a dark hole in the wall, then is suddenly sniffing out food.
The band keeps its sound grounded in distorted guitars, rock organs and propulsive drums. But it garlands the sonic landscape with strings of synths, which sounds of music that might not be entirely of this world — like where the non-violent vampires live.
Indigenous Robot helps to keep the Denver music scene bubbling. Drummer Ryan Longenecker, who sports a beard that is memorably luxurious, is the founder of Rainless Records, a nonprofit label for independent musicians. The other Robots are Elyse Elam on keys, Kyle South on guitar and vocals, and Vince Graeber on bass.
Album release show is Saturday at 7 p.m. at Ink Lounge, 29 S. Fox St., Denver; free; indigenousrobot.bandcamp.com. The band will wrap its West Coast tour with an Oct. 25 appearance at Bart’s Record Shop on the Hill in Boulder.
Quentin Young, firstname.lastname@example.org