In an industry becoming increasingly overcrowded with crossover acts, Portland, Oregon’s Trio Subtonic has carved out their own identity on their latest release, Cave Dwellers. Recorded off the heels of tours on both coasts, this tightly constructed disc features concise tunes bursting with melodic and rhythmic ideas, including hip-hop beats, exotic Brazilian rhythms and a flair for catchy start-stop arrangements.
Enhancing their keys/bass/drums lineup with a few touches of horns, Trio Subtonic kicks off the party off with “Bombast.” Opened by Jesse Brooke’s commanding drums, Bill Athens’ slick bassline follows, laying a thick foundation for Galen Clark’s keyboards, which come blasting through with swinging authority. Once the horns kick in, it’s like a slice of pure funk heaven. With a three-minute runtime, it’s a bold beginning and immediately accessible.