The Torn Images - Reviver (Cover Artwork)

The Torn Images

Reviver (2014)


The Torn Images are one of those "Bands Who Aren’t Technically A Band," but rather a solo project moonlighting as one. Fountain Valley musician Briand Arabaca formed the group as a duo in 2012, but when his cohort Jayson Thompson upped (drum)sticks for San Diego he soldiered on as a one-man operation and in late 2014 released The Torn Images’ debut album, Reviver, with the help of three session musicians from the Orange County area.

Sonically, Reviver sits smack-bang in the middle of the heavy indie rock canon, its stomping guitars and thumping drums bringing to mind Soundgarden, Foo Fighters or Stone Temple Pilots. Flagship track “The Drifting” starts like an Audioslave song and, with the introduction of Arabaca’s snarling, nasally vocal, soon begins to sound like Placebo or Alice In Chains; meanwhile, “Nearly Lost You” is very much Nirvana’s “Heart-Shaped Box” re-imagined. In this way, Reviver self-consciously harks back to the mid-'90s, and while there’s nothing new here, fans of those bands should find something to nod their head along to.

The songwriting, though on the whole steady and predictable, does throw up the occasional surprise, with the unexpectedly Bowie-esque “Life On A Standstill,” for instance, deepening the album halfway through with its more sophisticated arrangements and bleakly uplifting lyrics. Similarly, on closing track “World Of Meaning,” the introduction of acoustic guitar and synth pads helps to enrich Reviver’s occasionally flat sonic landscape.

All in all, one for the indie-rock throwback kids.