New York’s legendary antifolk scene has given us more delightful musicians than anywhere else in the world in recent years – Regina Spektor,
Jeffrey Lewis, most recently Darwin Deez and now former MTV animator Thomas Truax joins them.
Sonically, he’s cut from much of the same cloth, in that you hear classic Neil Young and Dylan strongly in the instrumentation,
but Truax also has a willingness to experiment and mix in more eclectic influences, bringing to mind Nick Cave at his elegant best,
Thomas Truax especially on ‘What’s The Matter With My Grey Matter?’. Ironically, given the scene that’s spawned him, it’s lyrically where Truax falls down a little.
There’s nothing too clunky, but there’s also no tangible vulnerability or humour either.
‘Sonic Dreamer’ is a good record, but not one people are going to fall in love with.
“We’ve got a lot to prove,” says Will “and I think we’ll do it. We’re not really chasing anything in the outside world, just in ourselves.
We’ve got a lot to prove, but to each other.” Henry is still involved to a large extent. He’s here today, as was he when we were here in November to listen to the record’s first six tracks.
And it was Henry and Blaine who wrote the first seed for this new album as half of that intended AA side, ‘Too Late To Talk’ (a song so brilliantly weepy that they could have flogged it to Leona Lewis).
Largely though, Kai, Will, Blaine and Kapil are “at war” unsupervised and yet armed with their most mature and classic sounding album to date.
To find them here isn’t that unexpected at all. ‘Making Dens’ was as boyish and grubby-handed as its title suggested;
‘Twenty One’ as lustful and excited as…well…a twenty-one-year-old.
This new album, considering its grand ideas, how it’s been made and how the band behind it are close enough friends to “never stop”,
should probably be called ‘Brothers In Arms’.
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