Album Review: Eria HummingBird – Lo-Fi Stop

Eria HummingBird is an Albi, France based composer and producer who likes to weave a tale about himself as much as within his music. When he pitched his album to me, he claimed that he had once been world famous, working with the biggest names in music, but a virus has wiped his name from existence. An intriguing story, and one that made me want to listen to the album. It’s called Lo-Fi Stop.

By Graeme Smith

Feature photo by Eria HummingBird

In many ways Lo-Fi Stop does what its title suggests. Across sixteen tracks, it provides chilled, minimalist groove, the kind that’s perfect for dampening the thoughts in your brain and getting lost in. Yet, it’s not just wallpaper ambience; there’s a lot going on in this album.

It opens with Ease Please, a sub-two minute meditation with a steady beat and a looping melody. It sets the scene of the album nicely and flows effortlessly into track two Look Around. From here the story becomes a little moodier. Long synths are distorted, reversed and manipulated into a sense of otherworldliness. A late addition of keys adds a lovely texture.

Come And Get Me takes things a retro direction, painting a picture of the solitude of youth. It’s a vibe that’s carried through to In My Room, a slow, measured, melancholic piece featuring drum machine and keys. Ngaïo is a slice of organic lo-fi, including mysteriously distorted piano and spoken world snippets. It oozes spirituality and is an early album highlight.

Already five tracks in, I was feeling suitably relaxed. Nostalgia kept things chill with echoing guitar and rumbling bass beats. Mhm Mhm Tired was rightly soporific with a sparse melody and the tempo of a lullaby. We then eased gently through the electro-acoustic guitar led My Wings, and timeless The Box.

The second part of the album is rounded of by The Bar Is Open Tonight, a haunting, sultry track that suggests the feeling of being out well past last orders. Almost lulled into a stupor, I was roused awake by I Miss Him. A tribute to the late rapper Lil Peep, it brings hip hop flavours, intermingling with touches of witch house. It’s the first track on the album that features vocals and they add some welcome texture. It’s another album highlight.

A Time In My Company also features vocals and is infused with a beautiful sense of peace and gratitude. Rosy is perhaps the album’s most experimental track. Modern and classical elements interweave, and there’s a real presence to it. The minimalism is put to one side for a few minutes and Eria plays with excess.

Entering the album’s last leg, Depression sets a darker tone. The beats are big and the lyrics confessional. We then get one more instrumental track in the form of the vibrant and textured Professor, before the album is closed out by Storytelling. An expansive, acoustic effort, it rounds off the album’s journey nicely.

I’m not sure I buy Eria’s story of being famous and forgotten, but with the shining sense of personality he’s put into Lo-Fi Stop, I see no reason why he can’t be mixing with the big names in future. You can check out the whole album below.