T0W3RS' TL;DR | Record Review | Indy Week
Pin It


On "To Be Woke," the finale of T0W3RS' second LP, TL;DR, Derek Torres retreats to old tricks. His voice emerges from a bower's nest of glowing drones and scrambled electronics, bird noises and guitar strums to deliver ponderous questions. As the beat builds behind Torres' coo, the inspiration becomes obvious: Animal Collective, circa 2005. It's as though the one-man band is channeling a standby playlist.

But Torres has been here before, so much so that T0W3RS' former output could seem like mere mimicry. To Torres' great credit, this incident emerges as an exception, an afterthought. Instead, throughout much of TL;DR, he slingshots through other influences to stake an identity of his own. These 10 songs are the closest he's ever been to sounding bigger than a moment, broader than pastiche. "Silk Hope" conjures a complicated Talking Heads bounce, while "M.P.D.B." wrangles The Arcade Fire's dramatic thrum. "Let Me In," a cover of Carrboro's The Human Eyes, is consummate cool verve.

Torres' change is evident from the jump with "Cups," an opener that starts low and slow but soon leaps for a series of exclamation marks. "You've got the things that I need," Torres howls, his falsetto lifted by a tide of sudden gusto. After the breakup of T0W3RS' first version and Torres' subsequent solo restructuring, he seems to have emerged with more to say by himself than he could ever manage when surrounded by equals.

Label: Phuzz Records


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Record Review

Twitter Activity

Most Recent Comments

Love it! All the songs are beautiful!

by Jon Champion on Record Review: The Return of The Veldt, The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur: The Drake Equation, Is Great (Record Review)

This release will be available Friday December 4th here:


Thanks! …

by Scott Phillips on Review: The electronic excellence of GNØER's Tethers Down (Record Review)

You should have let Currin write this. One of the best singers on earth and these were your observations? sounds …

by Remo on Record review: Jeanne Jolly's A Place to Run (Record Review)


Most Read

© 2016 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation