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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Doleful Lions
Out Like A Lamb
Parasol Records

Rating: NR/10 ?


October 1, 2004
Some obsessions are creepy. Necrophilia - creepy, hell that's downright disgusting. Foot fetishes - yeah, those are creepy. Public masturbation - now here is an obsession that I have found increasingly creepy ever since I had the displeasure of walking into a public restroom wherein a certain drug riddled homeless man stood openly pulling his pud last week. But an obsession with The Beach Boys, how can that be creepy? Shit, that's downright cute! After dropping lines like, "And when Neu! makes a noise/It sounds just like The Beach Boys" on the opening track of their album Motel Swim, and "don't you know it was the government/stopped The Beach Boys from releasing Smile" on Out Like A Lamb's "Surfside Motel", it seems like the only thing these lions are doleful about is not being Brian Wilson. They might not be Wilson, but boy they sure try their best to throw the lush harmonies out there.

The Doleful Lions are 21st century troubadours presenting their epic tales of travels far and wide in the form of folk songs about all things earthly and stellar in biblical times and the years that lie ahead. Settling on a three pronged attack this album finds the Lions letting Aynsley Pirtle's soft vocals share the spotlight a bit more often within the context of Jonathon Scott's wonderfully melodic, often tackily told, and occasionally a bit long-winded, but altogether pleasing tunes. The lo-fi production captures the songs well enough to differentiate all the instrumentation in the mix without burying the soundscapes that each track contains while still managing to avoid a palpable sheen. In fact, the vocals seem to be the centerpiece of the record as a whole, and can be found occasionally unaccompanied as in the coda to the opening track "Saturday Mansions".

Comparing any band who plays quiet, melodic pop to Yo La Tengo is becoming an almost unavoidable convention so I won't do that - though I think that I inadvertently may just have - but other bands like The Flaming Lips (where fans of Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots should find something to like here) and OK Computer-era Radiohead make sensible comparisons and their modern age paranoia sentiments are also mirrored on the songs "Stand In The Colosseum" and "Sunshine Spartacus". It would hardly be a stretch to make such a comparison, and I would think that any band would take that as a complement.

Out Like A Lamb has played a nice counterpoint to the new Of Montreal record (Aldhils Arboretum) that I have been spinning for a few weeks now as well. It has a tendency to lull the listener into forgetting about it, and it's hardly anything you haven't heard before, but damn if I couldn't hear it a million times and passively appreciate it just the same. Though not nearly as mandatory as the work of many of the band's peers, Out Like A Lamb is sure to find some takers out there, and if there is one thing that can be gleaned from it, it's to make sure that your obsessions are healthy ones, as they tend to be a bit more productive that way.

Reviewed by Mark Skipper
Mark Skipper currently resides in Nashville, TN where he can be found skipping shows, drinking Guinness, making bad home recordings, and complaining about how much music sucks these days.

See other reviews by Mark Skipper

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