While tunnel traffic is ostensibly the moniker for multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Adam Hachey, the move to bring long time collaborator, singer Jacky Muñoz, to the fore in the new album, ‘Age of Convictions’ pays dividends.
In this new album, Hachey has dialed up the intensity of the instrumentation: capturing the quite/loud ethics of the Pixies and the fuzzy raw guitars of bands like Dinosaur Junior and Pavement, and added the delicately beautiful floating vocals of Muñoz.
There’s an inherent tension but a deeply satisfying fusion: the diamond in the rough, beauty and the beast, innocence and experience.
And, above all, there is Hachey’s melodic ear both in guitar riff and song.
Tunnel traffic released a series of singles in advance of the album – we reviewed the opening track (after a musical introduction) ‘Another Story’ and found it to be filled with ‘mountain ranged melodies, a quiet/loud ethic and a driving rhythm’: it is, indeed, a fitting hors d’oeuvre for the album to follow:
Second single, ‘Skip’ is a slower pace reflective tune on the pain of nostalgia and memories, highlighting the delicate interplay between Hachey’s scratchy, at times dirty guitar and bass player Harshith D’mello’s melodic runs:
Third release, ‘I’ll be Sorry’, is mostly instrumental with layers of guitar running in a fast-paced skating pace as Muñoz sings ‘whether it’s days, months, years, I’ll be sorry’:
Across the eleven tracks, tunnel traffic’s songs evoke a sense of melancholia and regret, infused with anger and yet evoking acceptance and inevitability. The wash of fuzzy guitars build then recede like waves on a beach.
The title of the album is clever: deliberately ambiguous and reflective of the times we live in: is this the age of convictions as in the ever increasing amount of jailing of certain prominent people? Or does it refer to a series of firmly held and often antithetical beliefs that colour our discourse? Or is it a reflection of more personal struggles? Whatever the interpretation, this is welcomed, intelligent and sensitive songwriting in an age where bellicosity and shallowness seem to pervade.
‘Age of Convictions’ is ultimately a perfect collection of delightfully introspective songs that have a global perspective and universal appeal. tunnel traffic just keeps on getting better and better.
The album is out now and you can get it it through the link below: