The “Lost Album” is always an entertaining topic of conversation within any given circle of music nerds. Hours of discussion around what could have been from the likes of David Bowie, Prince, Marvin Gaye, Dr. Dre or even Supergrass. In the case when such an album is released, like The Beach Boys Smile, there’s all sorts of debate about the validity of the original “vision.” In short, the Lost Album is an exciting and contentious subject. So, when it came to light that early 2000’s local mainstays Imaginary Baseball League announced that a shelved album from 2005 was getting a remixing and remastering for release some sixteen years later, our attention was piqued.
That album, The Inevitable Parting, is set for release this Spring. The first single, “Elliston”, debuted over on the Scene and is a triumphant offering after nearly two decades away. We’re proud to premiere the second single from the no-longer-lost album entitled “Steeple to Steeple” and are happy to report that it’s equally as impressive, possibly moreso by showcasing the bands diversity.
IBL has always excelled in blending driving drums, intricate guitar parts and Aaron Robinson’s soaring vocals. “Steeple to Steeple” exemplifies this layering as much as any track from the band but the sound is fuller, the vocals feel more confident and, more importantly, the context has changed. The recordings themselves benefit from modern techniques but had this been released in 2005, it’s possible that it would have been unfortunately lumped in with bands lazily labeled “emo” at the time. Now that the cultural zeitgeist is familiar with the likes of Fleet Foxes, My Morning Jacket or Band of Horses it’s clear that Imaginary Baseball League is making rock music. Being emotive and vulnerable in your vocals and lyrics isn’t a pejorative. Quite simply, there’s no additional labeling necessary here.
It’s unclear if The Inevitable Parting was the title of the record back in the early aughts but it serves a new purpose now. IBL may have literally parted ways as a band but they’ve also parted from the baggage they carried at the time. There’s no way to know how this release would have done back in the day but it’s clear from “Steeple to Steeple” (and “Elliston”) that time has served the project well and it’s likely to be that rare success story of unearthing a Lost Album.