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+ Donato Wharton - Body Isolations
+ Svalastog - Woodwork
+ Tim Hecker - Harmony In Ultraviolet
+ Rosy Parlane - Jessamine
+ Jarvis Cocker - The Jarvis Cocker Record
+ Múm - Peel Session
+ Deloris - Ten Lives
+ Minimum Chips - Lady Grey
+ Badly Drawn Boy - Born In The U.K.
+ The Hold Steady - Boys And Girls Together
+ The Blood Brothers - Young Machetes
+ The Places - Songs For Creeps
+ Camille - Le Fil
+ Wolf Eyes - Human Animal
+ Christina Carter - Electrice
+ The Decemberists - The Crane Wife
+ Junior Boys - So This Is Goodbye
+ Various Artists - Musics In The Margin
+ Rafael Toral - Space
+ Bob Dylan - Modern Times
+ Excepter - Alternation
+ Chris Thile - How To Grow A Woman From The Ground
+ Brad Mehldau - Live in Japan
+ M Ward - Post-War
+ Various Artists - Touch 25
+ The Mountain Goats - Get Lonely
+ The White Birch - Come Up For Air
+ Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out of This Country
+ Coachwhips - Double Death
+ Various Artists - Tibetan And Bhutanese Instrumental And Folk Music, Volume 2
+ Giuseppe Ielasi - Giuseppe Ielasi
+ Cex - Actual Fucking
+ Sufjan Stevens - The Avalanche
+ Leafcutter John - The Forest And The Sea
+ Carla Bozulich - Evangelista
+ Barbara Morgenstern - The Grass Is Always Greener
+ Robin Guthrie - Continental
+ Peaches - Impeach My Bush
+ Oakley Hall - Second Guessing
+ Klee - Honeysuckle
+ The Court & Spark - Hearts
+ TV On The Radio - Return To Cookie Mountain
+ Awesome Color - Awesome Color
+ Jenny Wilson - Love And Youth
+ Asobi Seksu - Citrus
+ Marsen Jules - Les Fleurs
+ The Moore Brothers - Murdered By The Moore Brothers
+ Regina Spektor - Begin To Hope
+ The 1900s - Plume Delivery EP
+ Alejandro Escovedo - The Boxing Mirror
+ Function - The Secret Miracle Fountain
+ Sonic Youth - Rather Ripped
+ Loscil - Plume
+ Boris - Pink
+ Deadboy And The Elephantmen - We Are Night Sky
+ Glissandro 70 - Glissandro 70
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #2)
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #1)
+ The Flaming Lips - At War With The Mystics
+ The Glass Family - Sleep Inside This Wheel
+ Various Artists - Songs For Sixty Five Roses
+ The Fiery Furnaces - Bitter Tea
+ Motorpsycho - Black Hole/Blank Canvas
+ The Red Krayola - Introduction
+ Metal Hearts - Socialize
+ American Princes - Less And Less
+ Sondre Lerche And The Faces Down Quartet - Duper Sessions
+ Supersilent - 7
+ Band Of Horses - Everything All The Time
+ Dudley Perkins - Expressions
+ Growing - Color Wheel
+ Red Carpet - The Noise Of Red Carpet
+ The Essex Green - Cannibal Sea
+ Espers - II
+ Wilderness - Vessel States

44.1 kHz Archive

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Band Of Horses
Everything All The Time
Sub Pop

Every so often a CD comes along that makes me long for solitude — not only where no one else is making noise, but also where no one else is listening. When I was younger and had plenty of free hours and a normally quiet apartment, I often experienced music alone, and it would start to feel like it was only mine. Now I live in a noisy city with a noisy family, and I rarely have music of my own anymore. Rarely.

I sometimes manage to push the other ears and mouths aside for a while to make space for the music. Band of Horses' new disc, Everything All the Time, makes me need to do that. I find myself arranging times when my house will be empty so I can listen to the band's soothing mix of reverb and rock.

Singer Benjamin Bridwell's faraway voice and the hippie twang in some of the songs have earned Band of Horses comparisons to My Morning Jacket. The likeness is mainly in the vocals — and the rollicking track "Weed Party." My Morning Jacket are much more upfront, and pretty easy to share. Band of Horses keep a lot shrouded in effects and indistinct lyrics.

The disc opens with shimmery, strumming guitars, melting in on Bridwell's voice, which sings something having to do with Christmastime and presents. Turn it up as loud as you want; it can't sound abrasive. "The First Song" could be a Cocteau Twins cover: it's got the gauzy guitar lines, the lyrics that surface only every few phrases, and the sense that this is a secret between you and the band.

The Horses shed their soft side a bit by the second track. The atmospheric effects get a little more grounded when the drum and bass become more audible. By the third track, the high, plaintive guitar gives way to a bass-heavy swagger, and Bridwell's voice gets a little closer to the mic.

One of the disc's most engaging tracks is "The Funeral." The guitar heads back up to the ether as Bridwell sings, "I'm coming up only to hold you under/ And coming up only to show you wrong." Arcade Fire's CD last year, written after the deaths of some bandmembers' grandparents, sucked listeners in with its raw emotion. The same emotional intensity pulses out of this track, even though it's unclear whether the song is about the death of a relationship or the loss of a loved one. When Bridwell sings, "On every occasion, I'll be ready for the funeral," the guitars charge down from the heavens full of pain and rage; it feels epic and cathartic. The disc's single, "Great Salt Lake," delivers similar rounds of sadness and salvation.

Toward the end of the disc the Horses shake off some effects and let the guitar strings and voices have some more spotlight. On "Part One" Bridwell channels Neil Young in a sweet and romantic tale of lovers on the road. When they wake in the morning, he generously offers, "Good morning to you/ And more covers for you." Of course, he leaves right after — but first says he loves her. Mat Brooke, who works his magic on guitars and other stringed instruments throughout the disc, steps up to the mic on "I Go to the Barn Because I Like the." His deep voice contrasts with Bridwell's in a sultry paean to love, as both men sing, "I like to think I'm a mess you'd wear with pride/ Like some empty dress on the bed you've laid out for tonight."

There's something comforting (even a little Muppetlike) about the banjo-led "Monsters." When Bridwell sings "If I am lost, it's only for a little while," it's a reminder that I ought to get back myself, to the other ears and mouths in my life.But now I want to share with them this song about overcoming monsters — or the awful people that surround us. Monsters have a habit of showing up at recess.

by Lori Miller Barrett

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