“We tried to do this without you/but all we found is that we’re alone”.
You know the saying, “a rising tide lifts all ships?” This sentiment seems to be the driving force behind the first compilation of from the Fort Collins collective Act So Big Forest. While blog favorites Candy Claws have been the family/collective’s most notable export, few outside of Colorado know of the sheer magnitude of friends and collaborators that went into making C.C. such a viable national band. Behind their success comes a stunning amount of talent coming out of the frontier college town only known for housing Colorado State University and an egregious amount of mircrobreweries. Just look at the tracklist; 20 bands (which doesn’t even include the full roster of ASBF) in a town of under 150,000 people. What is even more impressive is that 18 of these bands are stone-cold solid. Contributers range from the fever dream-tropic drones of Ambassador Engine, to the floating (ah, that word again) vibes of Candy Claws, sophisticated nostalgia of Roger Roll, to newcomers Fellow Citizens and boy-girl dreaminess of Bear (The Ghost). Triton covers a wide breadth of musical ground from straight forward folk strummers like Eliza Boote and Brett Brady, distressed folk-rock of Riflemen and post-rock informed Paen, to the sweltering ambient-drone of Ocean Bump! and Kevin Costner Suicide Pact. While an overwhelming majority of this compilation is worthy of daily listening, there are a few offenders that are worth skipping. An Anomalous rap-track by Otem Relik strives for Dälek-esque noise loops but can’t move beyond the self-deprecating emo-rap of Atmosphere. The same goes for the precious indie-tronica of Galaxies which brushes a little too close to Owl City for comfort. 18/20 ain’t bad.
“We tried to do this without/but all we found is that we’re alone.” This line comes from Bear (The Ghost)’s track “Moses.” Act So Big Forest is a musical document of something more than a scene or a label, but an actual family whose success is achieved by the overall health of everyone involved. Given the semi-incestious nature of the artists involved (not uncommon for a member to be in five different projects), Candy Claws would not be possible without ASBF and vice-versa.