“How Eric Terino matches a feeling and a story to music so effortlessly in this album is admirable.”
American artist Eric Terino released his second album Innovations Of Grave Perversity last month, a follow up to his debut Champagne and Childhood Hunger. The punk/folk contrast between these two albums is brilliant, showcasing Terino’s ability to create a variety of different sounds as well as writing in many lyrical styles.
The first song you’ll hear on Innovations Of Grave Perversity is Felt. What I like about Felt is how we are straight away introduced to Eric’s strong yet angelic vocals. The lyrics reflect this, with lines like All I ever wanted was to feel like I was loved, but nothing ever measures up in this well that I’ve dug creating a poetic atmosphere. Felt then flows nicely into Torture The Dead, a gorgeous piano piece that reveals delicate almost whispering vocals at the chorus, establishing an emotional effect and bringing about this tranquility which is prevalent throughout the album as a whole.
The ethereal lyrics take the spotlight in Invocations, the stand out lines being Interpolations of honeyed memories, gather all the life you left with me and But these assemblies in my head, belie their every sentiment. Here we are acquainted with the best track of the album lyrically, where we notice how he cleverly crafts them to match his seraphic vocals and soothing instrumentals, coming face to face with his incredible writing talents.
Some piano notes later and we are invited to a harmonising collaboration featuring American Folk Rock singer Jolie Holland entitled Body Gets Stoned. Here we hear an immaculate blend of male/female vocals that mirror each other perfectly. Body Gets Stoned drifts pleasantly into the final track I Didn’t Live There – a great song to bring the album to a close. The orchestral instrumental is enough to keep you captivated. On top of this we are bestowed with Eric Terino’s flawless high vocal range and utopian collection of storytelling lyrics.
In an interview with The Big Takeover, Eric delves into the general themes of Innovations Of Grave Perversity, saying “There’s a whole host of themes running through my life present on this album, I actually think it’s kind of a ‘mature’ record in that sense. There are songs that deal with parenthood or accepting childlessness (“Torture The Dead”, “Boulder”), looking back on young love and the experience of coming out as an LGBTQ+ teen from a more advanced age (“A Snowfall At Dusk”), or the death of close friends and loved ones and how we manage those emotions in the years after they’ve passed (“Invocations”). I guess what I’m trying to share with the world, and what I’m trying to allow myself to believe, is that we’re not alone.”
You can listen to the album here: