Fans of Todd Moved to Portland (FKA The Vanilla Beans) are likely to have encountered Andy Garces’ electronic project 3 of 5: a sometimes three piece, sometimes duo, sometimes solo synth-pop band characterized by its sound entirely generated by Nintendo 3DS consoles (when in a group Andy is often accompanied by Todd Anderson– yes, the Todd that moved to Portland– and Syrhea Conaway, of Syna So Pro). The outfit presented their new release ooo on their Bandcamp on May 2021, a project that started with a single song and slowly added new ones throughout the year to ongoingly fill the track list.
It is now 2022 and ooo has officially been completed. The final run of the album features 13 songs of similar lengths all tinted with 3 of 5’s characteristic brand of chiptune synths, ill-pronounced and relatable vocals, and bouncing grooves that oscillate as a stable bedding for the mixes. The textures are often charming and smile-inducing, but a lot of the sounds picked on these new songs are jarring and disconcerting. These acoustic dissonances paired with Andy’s iconic laid back vocals and themes of stale existence, mental stability, geek culture, and love for others and oneself form a satisfying clash that marks a dense and off-putting step in the sonic history of the band. On ooo 3 of 5 definitely feels grounded, but also appear more adventurous and inclined to experiment than ever.
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Listen to ooo via Bandcamp below: