The kind of communion indie rocker Brooks Hudgins describes in his newest album Drive Thru Communion seems far from religious. There is imagery of gas stations selling drugs, sarcastic lyrics about addictive personalities battling against lyrics of deeper and more abstract meanings, and emotional melodies that paint a picture of love and loss too hard to bear. Nothing resembling the Christian ceremony you think of when you hear the word communion.
Tracks like “Golden Arches” and “Gas Station Viagra” lay down musical grit that presents an album made up of dive bar anthems. However, the studio album is clean and intricate and also provides more scholarly-like tracks that forces you to ponder over life. Tracks like “Trans Atlantic” and “Lost In Conversation” actually started out as poems that eventually evolved into songs.
Brooks Hudgins, “Only Fans”
“[‘Lost In Coversation’] was written while I was in Tennessee visiting my little cousin who was dying of cancer at the time in June of this year, in the middle of fucking covid—that was the last time I talked to her,” Hudgins says. “It was just a really surreal experience and the lyrics are heavy—a lot of people are like, ‘this is my favorite song on the album’ and I can barely listen to it.”
Hudgins says writing music is therapeutic for him. While therapy does deal with hard emotions at the forefront, that doesn’t mean it’s all melancholic. Hudgins is an upbeat guy who’s lived all over the place from Texas, California, Scotland, and now NYC. His worldly and optimistic personality also shines through in his art.
The eight-minute-long song “Golden Arches” starts off with an ominous intro, but has a more playful meaning. As the last track to be recorded in the studio, Hudgins says “Golden Arches” is the one song he was able to make all the calls on.
“It’s the only song on the album where I play every single instrument,” he says. “It’s absolutely all over the place [and] the lyrics are hilarious and ridiculous—it always makes me chuckle.”
It’s not just in Drive Thru Communion you can experience Hudgins boundless writing abilities. He is also a scriptwriter for the realistic fiction podcast “Make It Up As We Go” featuring artists like Billy Bob Thorton, Dennis Quaid, and Miranda Lambert. Plus, he and his friends recently released a hilarious music video for a “roommate diss” track about being quarantined with your roommates.
However, Hudgins says his top priority during the pandemic is to keep writing. After finally finishing all the touches on Drive Thru Communion Hudgins says he was relieved to just go back to writing.
“It’s not about the fruit, it’s about the juice,” he says about his music. “If you listen to it and if you like it, it’s got the juice.”
Listen to the entire interview with Brooks Hudgins and Drive Thru Communion in its entirety on this week’s episode of The Music Meetup.