These days, it often seems there are fewer and fewer bands with multiple songwriters. And it’s a shame — the creative complex of housing two voices under one roof can vault a promising set of players from the middle-range to the stratosphere. Dueling vocalists and contrasting lyrics are great; it’s the dueling and contrasting personalities that can get in the way. Fortunately, Richmond, Va.’s Avers are doing just fine with not two, not three, but four songwriters leading the way.
Billboard is excited to premiere Avers’ sophomore album, Omega/Whatever, a day ahead of its July 29 release date on EggHunt Records. The myriad voices sweeten the deal, but the strength of the songs is the unifying constant. Tight grooves, heartland hooks — these songs blaze by like exit signs down the highway.
Omega/Whatever features lead vocals from Avers’ quartet of songwriters: Adrian Olsen and Alexandra Spalding (also of Hypercolor), the Mason Brothers’ James Mason and JL Hodges, also of Farm Vegas. Rounding out the group is multi-instrumentalist Charlie Glenn (of the Trillions) and Head and the Heart percussionist Tyler Williams.
“We believe there is strength in the collaboration and melding of many and we hope you do too,” Olsen tells Billboard. “We made this album in between touring our debut record Empty Light throughout the past couple of years. The album, and us as a band, hopes to meld the voices and songwriting of four individuals into an organic living mixtape of sorts that echoes bands like The Beatles, Sonic Youth, Dr Dog, CSNY, and all of the inspiring multi-singer acts that have come before us.”
For the Richmond band, Omega/Whatever is like a collective statement on what its members have been through in recent years — searching for “the sure footing of adulthood in a shifting culture,” as Olsen puts it. “These challenges mean different things to any individual, but the shared outcome is to move forward and carry on to try our best hoping for a good outcome.”