ALBUM REVIEW: Automatic World by The Brummies

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WRITTEN BY: Caitlin McGeehan

The Brummies recently released their sophomore album, Automatic World, and it’s nothing short of a serotonin boost. The Nashville-based trio consists of John Davidson (vocals, multiple instruments), Jacob Bryant (vocals, multiple instruments), and Trevor Davis (drums, background vocals). With Automatic World, The Brummies organically meld a vintage vibe with modern melodies. In a world where it feels like we’re running on autopilot (especially towards the end of the semester),  ironically, Automatic World is a reminder to step back and revel in processing the present and past. 

With their ‘70s classic rock vibes inspiration, The Brummies inherently have a nostalgic sound on Automatic World. The tracks, “Cherry Blossom,” “That Night,” and “Been Here Before,” all center on the feeling of deja vu. “Cherry Blossom” opens the album with a heart-filling synth that guides the harmonies throughout the catchy chorus with the lyrics “Got the feeling that I’ve been here before.” “Cherry Blossom” parallels the later track, “Been Here Before,” which questions the odd instinctual feeling– has the couple actually been here before? Sonically, the two bookend tracks create that same blissful feeling. 

“Sunshine,” “After Midnight,” and “Fever Dream,” from The Brummies EP Fever Dream, (released earlier this year), are included on the album, and their groove fits right into the ethereal experience. However, “Call Me” is a standout and truly encapsulates the comfort of listening to Automatic World.  The hazy guitar creates the doting love song, completed by the chorus, asking for a call, because Davidson will always listen. Who wouldn’t want someone always waiting to hear them on the other end of the phone line (or at least a cute song to dream about it to)? The groovy and love-drenched “Love Language” continues the sentiment and provides a romance jam.

The title track, “Automatic World” is number 10 on the album.  It’s a song of longing nestled between the dazzling disco of “After Midnight” and the reminiscent “Tomorrow.” “Automatic World” gives a different tone than the rest of the album, but distinctly “The Brummies” sound nonetheless. The tempo is slower and the vocals are glued to the mellow bassline. While being “buried” in an automatic world as the chorus notes, Davidson can’t live without the subject of the song. 

“Island” is a sonic tropical vacation and satisfying album conclusion in one. The eight-and-a-half minute song serves as a contrast to the connotation of an automatic world. It’s carefree and accepting that things may not go right. But the island is a beautiful place nonetheless, with coconut trees and ukelele strumming. An interlude within the song includes a beach soundscape, which leads into a medley of Automatic World’s recognizable melodies (like the catchy “After Midnight” chorus). 

A sonic summary is a perfect loop to Automatic World, as it solidifies the essence of nostalgia for the album and the first-time listen.

Tracklist: 

  1. Cherry Blossom
  2. Sunshine
  3. Call Me
  4. Fever Dream
  5. Til It Happens Again 
  6. Who Should I Be 
  7. Love Language 
  8. That Night
  9. After Midnight
  10. Automatic World
  11. Tomorrow
  12. Been Here Before
  13. Island

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