After 3 EPs in the span of many years, a remix album, as well as several collaborations in between, it is here in 2018 that Garden City Movement, the alternative, electronica and indie pop band trio that consist of members, Roy Avital, Yoav Saar and Johnny Sharoni from Tel Aviv, Israel, have finally released their debut full length record with their 18 track, experimental album Apollonia.
Apollonia starts off with the short introductory piece “Again” which sets the tone with a chillwave-esque instrumental that bleeds into the first proper track on the album “Passion is a Dying Theme” and it is with this track that the tone of the album is set, bringing forth themes of depression, and of shattered relationships, it’s a song that is saturated in distorted yet hard to make out vocals, as well as subtle layers of guitar.
Later in the album, we come to the track “Slightly all the Time”, which is the album’s first single, and it is here that the trio begin to showcase their full diversity in musicianship with a track that is full of subdued keyboard arrangements, catchy trip-hop beats, Asian inspired string segments, and even an interesting horn solo, again, while the lyrics are somewhat hard to make out, it is somewhat alleviated by their ethereal atmosphere, aided by the distorted vocal effects. As the albums first half comes to the end, it is in the second half where the tracks become a bit more poppy, incorporating more dance and electronica elements, along with more uptempo instrumentals.
All in all, it’s clear that Garden City Movement’s debut album is an impressive effort, while not exactly being a masterpiece. It is a great record to put on when you are in need of a comforting, ambient calm, or for when you’re taking a scenic hike, and throughout its stacked track-list, there is a clear diversity in genre and style, which is definitely worth repeated listening to catch some layers of music one might have missed the first go round.