Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
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Downbeat but uplift
John L Murphy | Los Angeles | 01/16/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This Ohio band reminds me of a cross between alt-country vocals, slowcore Bedhead or some Texas Trance Syndicate label outfit, and with a touch of New Radiant Storm King or Galaxie 500 pacing, if not as chipper! String overlays add to the depth of the tunes without growing schmaltzy or emo-cheesy; one bad member is credited for these pretty much alone. Intriguingly, it was recorded (well) at Idful in Chicago (Touch & Go affiliate?) and mastered at Abbey Road, not bad for such an unfortunately under-the-radar outfit. Guitars twang clearly, the vocals follow that post-M. Stipe delivery style without mumbling or mewling. The rhythm section's efficient but subdued. It's downbeat in an uplifting way, suiting a wintry mood whatever the season. Vocals mesh with the strings smoothly yet keep a bit of raggedness in that avoids monotony. Once in awhile, as on the ten-minute "New Son," dissonance and staggered beats keep you from drowsing. The songs gather momentum as they progress, building up to satisfying crescendos and emotional climaxes and while at first they may not knock you over, this kind of a collection grows on you more subtly.
When this came out a decade ago, I never heard of it. They could have been where Wilco is today, I reckon. Thanks to AMG, which ranked this in their top tier of "slowcore," I tracked down a copy. I understand that the band made other records, but that this one's the one to snag. This might have gained five stars, and only falls short because of a tendency for the vocals towards consistency but also predictability after a bit. While "New Son" does show that the band's aware of this tendency, the song lacks enough innovation to earn its running time. This is not a major shortcoming; they don't make a false step or hit a wrong note. It's intimate music made for long introspection."
Brooding, perfect guitar
John L Murphy | 10/28/1998
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This was the first REX I heard, and by the end of the second song, I thought I might never take it out of my CD player. Just listen to the first track, "Morning" and check out the way it builds and builds, until you think you're gonna die and then it lets loose...with this amazing wash of guitar and strings. The only gripe I have with this record is the silly cover art. If you like RAIN DOGS, VIVA LAST BLUES or "Sway" from STICKY FINGERS...you must hear this album."