Vinyl Review: Glass Apple Bonzai - Night Maze (Sofa King Vinyl)

Glass Apple Bonzai
Album: Night Maze (2018)
Sofa King Vinyl SKV-1012
Release Date: Dec 7, 2018

Before starting this blog, I want to send a word of thanks to Sofa King Vinyl for sending me two of their newest releases for review.  They have been a pleasure to deal with.  This is the second vinyl release from them that I will be reviewing and it comes from another band I was not currently aware of, but if you are a fan of 80s synth pop or Depeche Mode then this is definitely for you.

Today I am looking at the vinyl release of Glass Apple Bonzai's Night Maze.  The album was initially released digitally on May 1, 2015, and Sofa King Vinyl released it on wax in December of 2018.  Glass Apple Bonzai is based out of Toronto, Ontario, Canada and has been releasing music since 2014.

The first thing you notice when you get the album is the fantastic artwork by Paul Sizer of Sizer Design + Illustration.  It's a very cool looking sci-fi cover that fits the title track name and ties in other titles on the album such as "Blue Satellite" and "Dancing on the Moon".  A very cool concept with very stunning visual results.  The images are crisp and clean with no visible pixelation.  The rear cover is a nice continuation of the theme with a closer look at the "maze".  I really dig the artwork on this album.

Inside of the package is a download card for those that enjoy a digital copy of their music along with the vinyl.  Also, is a nice black poly-lined sleeve.  I mentioned in the last Sofa King Vinyl review that I love the fact that they went the extra mile to provide a premium sleeve with the product.  This is appreciated by vinyl lovers because it saves us from having to replace the paper sleeves, and shows the consumer you care about the product you are putting into their hands.

The vinyl comes in two variations of 200 copies each.  The first is called Blue Satellite, and the second is referred to as Midnight Black.  I received the midnight black version for this review and it's gorgeous.  It has a very nice sheen to it to give it a little extra look from your average everyday black vinyl record.  Overall, the packaging is simple but visually stunning.  I give Sofa King Vinyl an A on the quality of the package.

Sonically the album is fantastic.  The vinyl is quiet, crisp and full of richness.  The music comes through beautifully through my setup.  The bass thumps, the synths fill the room and the vocals are leveled perfectly.  Sofa King delivers another home run on their mastering of the album for vinyl.

I mentioned at the top that fans of Depeche Mode or 80s synth pop will like this album, and after giving it a full listen I still agree with that statement.  It has a nice updated feel to that style of music, and Daniel X. Belasco's voice has that deep dark vibe which is pretty cool.  It hints of gothic tones at times, and at others reminds me of Brad Roberts of the Crash Test Dummies.  The music itself has a nice groove to it and you can tell Daniel puts a lot of thought into each instrument and part.  I have to say that I enjoyed this album more than I expected.  If you are into synthpop, Depeche Mode, or that 80s synth style music, then Glass Apple Bonzai is definitely worth checking out.  His bandcamp site can be found here.

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