Album Review: “Absolute Dreams” by tunnel traffic

After observing a close friend and musical comrade leave music behind indefinitely, Adam Hachey, the man behind experimental acoustic electro project, tunnel traffic, decided to forge ahead alone.  Tunnel traffic is the result of Houston, TX-based Hachey’s new found confidence in his desire, ability and drive to write and create music. From this experience of deep reflection on music, striving to understand why songwriting was so important to him and if it was something that truly was important to him, tunnel traffic’s debut record, Absolute Dreams, was born.

Hachey writes, records and produces all of his music, alone. The outcome is a distinctive mix of acoustic strumming, synths, and other electronic features that somehow despite the stark differences between the instruments’ sounds and purpose, they lock onto each other fluently.

In many of the songs, you can hear Hachey contemplating what music means to his life and himself. In “Lost Time”, a track that holds a sense of mystery clearly derived from Hachey’s thoughts of music, he speaks of songs only he can hear:

Music playing in my ears, songs that only I can hear.

As “Lost Time” continues, it builds subtly in intensity until it resolves itself. The relief is audible, perhaps manifesting the relief that came to Hachey in the form of music even though he was questioning its importance for a time.

 

The tracks are short, varying in 1 to 4 minutes in length. Each one delivers a beautiful and concise message to the listener, packaged impeccably with Hachey’s submissive and delicate voice against dreamy synths and what sounds to me, like an ukulele.

Purely instrumental tracks like “Space Out”, “Sleeper”, “Pain”, “Wooden Devices” and “This Is For You” offer moments for the listener to spend some time with their own thoughts as Hachey’s music has this striking ability to instill the need for introspection. You as the listener can contemplate what the words “space out”, “sleeper” and “pain” mean to you, what they stir up in your own mind.

Hachey bares his heart and soul in Absolute Dreams. “I Need This” is a genuine and honest description of those times when you feel completely out of control but are able to maintain the awareness that:

I’m a wreck, but I’ll be OK.

 

I congratulate Adam Hachey on his bold dive out into the world of music alone as tunnel traffic. Absolute Dreams is a warm hand extended from a cold place.

You can purchase Absolute Dreams on tunnel traffic’s Bandcamp page.

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