Brazos mastermind Martin Crane uses conventional tools — guitar, bass, drums, every now and then some keyboard or tambourine — to build intricate songs that lean hard on idiosyncrasy. On Saltwater, the second Brazos album (and first for the fine label Dead Oceans), Crane orchestrates a mad indie-rock clatter that sounds effortless, easy, always on the brink of breaking but never really at risk of falling apart. “Always On” strikes a telling opening note with feverishly strummed acoustic guitar, a funky bass line, streaks of synths, and drums that tumble as if played inside a dryer. Over top is Crane’s expressive voice, oddly adenoidal but agile and expressive. “How the Ranks Was Won” works all the same elements into a sweeping drama, with a casual shift of styles subtly and impressively prevalent on the rest of the record. The result is indie rock brushed with jazzy complexity and delivered with all the nonchalance of old Brazilian record spinning on a beach in the sun.
By David C. Casey on 10.06.14 in News
Between the rolling-wheels acoustic strumming and the determined boot-stomps-along-the-highway-shoulder blues, Greylag's debut self-titled LP travels an open road, whether cruising with the roof down in the sun or haunte...
By Ryan Reed on 08.05.14 in Reviews
Bear in Heaven's fourth LP, Time Is Over One Day Old, is a moment of shedding and letting go. Like its predecessors (including their 2009 breakout, Beast Rest Forth Mouth), it's filled with seductive sonic landscapes: tr...
By J. Edward Keyes on 07.23.14 in Features
“As the car was spinning, we weren’t scared. We weren’t screaming. I just remember saying softly, ‘It’s OK, Sue. It’s OK.’”
By Ian Cohen on 06.24.14 in Reviews
Every Strand of Oaks album has been accompanied by a peripheral narrative about Timothy Showalter, Consummate Underdog. He battled homelessness and a bad breakup prior to his debut Leave Ruin and obscurity on 2010's bril...