American Aquarium is an raucous Americana band but their latest album “Chicamacomico” is a somber solo venture by the band’s lead singer B.J. Barham.

The title of the album is a life saving station on the Outer Banks and a metaphor for the heart wrenching songs. Barham’s mother died on New Years eve and he and his wife have recently endured a miscarriage. The album puts those events into words.

With loss all around during the pandemic these songs are highly relatable and Barham’s ability with a well chosen turn of phrase makes his pondering of mortality both compelling and healing.

The band’s lineup has changed many times over since their beginnings seventeen years ago and B.J. Barham is the one original member and unifying voice. Chicamacomico is not indicative of their core sound, but through it’s thematic perspective, it is a powerful statement on life’s wreckage and how to survive it.