Sunday, June 1st, 2008
Sunday Cleaning – Volume 91
|Grand Archives / Grand Archives (SubPop)
No band better encapsulates the house sound for SubPop circa 2008 than Grand Archives. Fronted by Mat Brooke, formerly of Band Of Horses, the Seattle-ites start with a base built on the same recipe as band’s keening, reverb-soaked country rock and stirs in both the Fleet Foxes’ ’70s folk-rock affects and the Shins’ pop sense and leave it to simmer until good and tender. The finished goods may come off a bit more anonymously than than the individual reference points but that doesn’t make it any less satisfying for those with a taste for widescreen musical ambitions. Anyone who questioned Brooke’s decision to leave Band Of Horses on the cusp of their breakthrough to strike out on his own should be silenced after hearing this record.
Daytrotter posted a session with the band last week and they’re playing the El Mocambo on Friday, June 6.
|Sea Wolf / Leaves In The River (Dangerbird)
Alex Brown Church doesn’t sound like a happy guy. Across ten tracks of Sea Wolf’s debut full-length, his rich voice ranges from melancholic to stoic overtop tastefully orchestrated arrangements – overemoting is not a concern for him. The record is sonically beautiful, with an old-world, distant gathering storm at night feel that, at the risk of taking the band and album names too literally, comes with a definite nautical theme both lyrically and musically. There’s much to like about Sea Wolf but as I noted when I saw them live a year ago, there’s an emotional distance inherent in their craft that makes them difficult to love. Maybe they just need to smile a bit.
Chart talks literary influence with Church. Sea Wolf are at the El Mocambo on Tuesday, June 3.