Rostam – Changephobia (2021) [FLAC 24bit/96kHz]

FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 38:10 minutes | 806 MB | Genre: Indie Pop, Indie Rock
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Matsor Projects

Changephobia is the 2nd full-length solo record from Grammy Award-winning songwriter, producer, and composer Rostam Batmanglij. An adventurous new direction for Rostam, the songs collected on Changephobia are deeply personal, yet universal for anyone who has ever experienced doubt. In addition to being a founding member of the seminal New York Indie Rock Band, Vampire Weekend, Rostam has been described as “one of the great pop and indie-rock producers of his generation.” Rostam has produced & co-written critically heralded recent albums by Clairo and Haim, as well as singles from Maggie Rogers, Solange, Charli XCX, Frank Ocean, Santigold and others

Cars play an important role on the second solo album from Rostam Batmanglij, the instrumentalist who gave his former band Vampire Weekend its globe-hopping charm. It makes sense, given the meaning of the made-up title: “Transphobia, biphobia, homophobia—these words hold a weight of threat, and it occurred to me that … the fears they describe are rooted in a fear of change,” Rostam has said. It’s almost like as if this record is a map for getting to a new, more open way of thinking, being, living. “Don’t wanna be pretty like a girl/ I think I’m pretty much your boy,” he sings on the perky “4Runner,” an ode to road tripping and finding cooperation in love. The manic rhythm and big-shouldered baritone sax—an interesting new signature for Rostam after a long embrace of cello and harpsichord—of “Kinney” is a rousing push-and-pull against the somnambulistic lyrics: “In your car I fall asleep/ pass out in the front seat/ on the pavement I was half alive/ half ocean, half sky/ half shore, half tide.” The record also sometimes feels as if it’s not of this world. “These Kids We Knew” starts off sounding underwater, comes more clearly into focus, then continues to bob in and out. Written in a “fever-dream state” while recovering from COVID, the song is about Gen Z putting older generations on trial for not caring enough about global warming and the problems they piled on. “Next Thing” is like a collision of two worlds: It warps abruptly from bouncy NYC jazz pop, with Rostam about to break into knowing laughter (“What makes you think you’re any better/ ‘Cause you’re not/ take a seat and a slot/ on the bus heading West”), into a languid Pacific dream: “The next thing I knew I was in California / It didn’t feel strange at all/ Everybody said/ ‘I’ve got to warn you, you won’t be back next fall.'” It’s absolutely lovely. “From the Back of a Cab” is glitchy and beautiful. “Unfold You”—again with that baritone sax —is breathy, sexy, practically R&B. The hand drums of “Bio18” are meditative. And the pretty, nostalgic closer “Starlight” feels like a modern re-casting of Chet Baker. – Shelly Ridenour


1. Rostam – These Kids We Knew
2. Rostam – From The Back of a Cab
3. Rostam – Unfold You
4. Rostam – 4Runner
5. Rostam – Changephobia
6. Rostam – Kinney
7. Rostam – Bio18
8. Rostam – [interlude]
9. Rostam – To Communicate
10. Rostam – Next Thing
11. Rostam – Starlight