Fifteen years in the making, Minnesota eclectic prog / avant-pop / art-math quintet Bubblemath's sophomore sequence, Edit Peptide, provides a worthwhile wait with its non-formulaic formula of lively textures, wacky and virtuosic musicianship, hypnotically robust vocals and charmingly astute attitude. Blending in-your-face intricacy with eccentric experimentation, dense and poppy harmonies, symphonic vibrancy and tongue-in-cheek foundation, Bubblemath are clever and musically intricate, but despite their loyal adherence to high information-density compositional constructs, they make serious and seriously quirky music that doesn't take itself too seriously and allows the fun to shine through.
The current Bubblemath line-up came together in 1998 and released their first, 2002's Such Fine Particles Of The Universe. Then came mostly silence. Naturally, they recognize that having so many years between albums could be —as Kai Esbensen jokes— "[an] advantage or a detriment. Maybe both!" He reflects that the group originally thought it’d be “a breeze” to follow-up Such Fine Particles of the Universe, an album that won them 86,000 MySpace followers and Minnesota Music Academy’s "2002 Best Eclectic Recording” award.
However, a series of setbacks, ranging from "broken equipment, to broken promises, to loss of funding, to loss of partners and pets and parents, to incompatible mix engineers, to extended sabbaticals, to extended medical emergencies" made it difficult to accomplish that ambition." Add in other factors, and it's easy to see why Edit Peptide gestated for so long. Ultimately, the lengthy hiatus did prove positive, though, as it allowed "all five of [them] to become better musicians" who are capable of yielding a more striving, unpredictable, and colorful collection. They couldn't be prouder of it!
It's not often that a band releases a new album after such a long hiatus, let alone something that exceeds expectations beyond fans’ wildest dreams. Somehow, though, Bubblemath has done just that with Edit Peptide. By conducting so many divergent styles, refining their songwriting and compositional skills, and most of all, sticking to their guns when it comes to crafting highly challenging and adventurous, but also quite hypnotic and welcoming, tunes, the quintet proves just how perfectly a band can fuse the familiar and the fresh.