For those Bon Iver fans out there (yes alternative music fans, I know that’s pretty much everyone), Volcano Choir is just another reason to love Justin Vernon. For those who don’t know who Justin Vernon is, he’s the frontman and brainchild behind the incredibly popular indie folk band Bon Iver. His portfolio of music is disappointingly much smaller than most alternative music fans would like it to be, but he arguably has made no missteps with anything he has created thus far. Volcano Choir is a project of Justin Vernon in collaboration with members of Collections of Colonies of Bees, and they currently have 2 studio albums out.
Despite most of Bon Iver’s songs being up for almost too much interpretation, Volcano Choir has some much more straightforward lyrics, especially with “Byegone.” With lines like “With enough kief, you can really bore someone,” its obvious that the members of Volcano Choir care less about getting high with this second album and are more concerned with their audience lifting them up to new spiritual heights. As is the case with most other songs on this album, “Byegone” is meant to be like a wave just as the album cover conveys. The song starts incredibly slow and ominous, but you can somehow feel that some sort of crescendo or set of crescendos are coming soon. Post-crescendo, the listener is given time and downplay to take in what just hit them, making “Byegone” seem temporary yet leaving a lasting subconscious memory of the sound that just crashed into them.