Every Gloom Balloon release is a cause for celebration. Whether it’s a single or an album, there is something intrinsically heartening in knowing Patrick Tape-Fleming is out there making music. More than any other musician, I feel like his songs speak directly to me. Be it our close proximity in age and midwest upbringing, or just a case of being caught in the same cultural bubble, I always feel like his music is (incredibly loud) and extremely close.
His latest album begins with the gloomiest of chords before taking off like a rocket ship into a glorious ELO-like soundscape of layered vocals, warped strings, and horns. It’s a beautifully produced track that takes a simple lyric, “Don’t you ever say goodbye, true love waits it never dies,” and turns it into a brilliant introduction to the record.
The first time we hear his voice, Fleming is singing the title of his latest opus over a big “Hey Jude” piano riff. If you’re wondering why it’s taken me all of four sentences to point out two huge influences on Gloom Balloon’s music, it’s because Patrick weaves his own musical history into his songs so perfectly that all those references are at once blatantly obvious and logical. He doesn’t shy away from honoring his favorite artists, and he writes the songs in a way that honors their memories and builds on the foundation that they set for him. He may be eluding to that strong attachment on “All My Feelings For You” when he sings “I got a feeling that you dug out my soul, the deepest darkest dungeons of rock and roll.”
If you’ve followed this site throughout the years, you know that I’ve covered all of Gloom Balloon’s music. If you haven’t taken my advice yet, please don’t miss this one. Patrick has already put out a bunch of songs from the album for you to hear, including the one I premiered back at the beginning of August. Go listen and realize how much you’ve been missing out on these last few years. Once you’re done, go buy the album from Grand Phony Music Company here. It will be streaming everywhere starting tomorrow, September 25th.