Coburn Station looks ahead on sophomore album, “Tomorrows”

Coburn Station | Jessi Page

Mountain Rock

Downhome mountain rockers Coburn Station are a popular mainstay of the Tahoe music scene. For more than a decade, they’ve built a regional fanbase on the strength of live performances accented by experimental improvisation, luminous dance grooves and oldschool rock n’ roll.

Their long-awaited sophomore album, “Tomorrows, arrives on July 18. The pristine 42-minute LP explores themes of consciousness and connection through seven shimmering tracks engineered at 25th Street Recording in Oakland.

We open with a locked-in drum beat as the record’s eponymous single (being released July 4)takes us on a hyperfunk journey through space and time. Shades of Pink Floyd, Primus and Phish permeate the soundscape and the close-knit quartet has never sounded tighter. The song fades out right around where the live version would take off, somewhere into the kaleidoscopicstratosphere.

Coburn Station is known for their multi-part compositions musical journeys of the mind written variously by all four band members. “Paranoia and Desire” is a restless rocker dancing from spacious interplay to an anthemic climax. “Stacks” begins with a bluesy piano riff that materializes into a sweeping panorama of 6/8 time.

They also know how to lay it down with the best of them. “Walkin’ Away” is a genuine, three-chord facemelter for guitarist Dan McAlister to show off his chops over the seamless backbeat of drummer Conor McAlindin and bassist Thomas Page.

On the B side, “Motivations Within” carves a clean pocket that materializes into a sparkling funk jam. “Love Letter” leads with keyboardist Brian Mooney’s soulful grand piano as he takes vocals on this groovy, ambient love song. To close the album, “Obsidian” moves with flinty-edged, lyrical purpose toward a harmonious future of hope and promise.

As the music transitions from anxiety toward peace, sadness to joy and darkness becomes light, “Tomorrows” leaves us wanting more and loving every minute of it. What stands out most is the way the band plays together as an interconnected unit. As they say, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts, both now and forever.

Coburn Station performs throughout the Sierra Nevada this summer: on July 7 at Concerts at Commons Beach in Tahoe City with Lindsay and the Cheeks; July 28 at Gambler’s Run Music Festival in Crystal Bay, Nev. with The Wood Brothers, Donovan Frankenreiter and Rayland Baxter; and Sept. 7 at a June Lake Jam Fest afterparty at Liberty Bar in Mammoth Lakes. |