You know the drill for an indie synthpop concert: a dark, smoky basement packed to the brim that probably violates the maximum occupancy of the building. However, San Francisco-based Geographer, with new album Ghost Modern dropping on March 24, seems to suggest with its new single “Need” that it’s outgrown those well-worn shoes. From the intimacy of 2008’s “Leave” and 2009’s “Verona” to the despair of 2010’s “The Dream Has Faded,” Geographer expands its sound with “Need” — literally.
It’s certainly an indication that the members are maturing as musicians, and if the expansive, yet dreamy, vocals and instrumentation suggest anything, it’s that Geographer is like that little adorable wunderkind you used to babysit and you go home over spring break to discover that his voice has deepened and he towers six inches over you now, but he’ll always be the little boy who was scared of the dark in your mind. It’s hard to predict how this would sound live on a small stage (or in an orchestral environment, as Geographer has been known to perform with string quartets occasionally) but maybe this just means that Geographer is growing up and preparing to take on bigger stages.
Frontman Mike Deni will always love stage diving and crowd surfing, which may be a little harder to do in bigger venues, but if anything, “Need” reassures the listener that Geographer hasn’t lost its contemplatively catchy musical magic. We’ll just have to wait until late March to see what else is in store for us.