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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
The Red Thread
After the Last
Badman Recording Co.

Rating: NR/10 ?


October 1, 2004
Disclaimer: As many times as my comparisons to Jason Lakis' newest outing might make you laugh, they're as much appropriate as they are meant in great respect.

That said, you may know Mr. Lakis from his acclaimed musical history in the group Half Film, but this is his first new venture to the masses, and in an entirely different form.

What we have here is a spaghetti western take on mellow AM rock. While that description may frighten some - myself included - it is a fluid and fundamentally textured soundscape, influenced as much by Wilco as it is by Roy Orbison.

The core of the album reminds me of, believe it or not, The Atlanta Rhythm Section's "Spooky." While the artist describes himself as "a little bit Calexico, a little bit Pinback," I can only picture him pumping slick guitar licks onstage, wistfully crooning about "a spooky little girl like you." It is as uncanny as it is irrefutable.

While his personal pick of the Bad Brains' "Sailin' On" wouldn't lend itself as an easy choice for his sound, he transitions it to this light and melodic scenery without a hitch. Upbeat and polished-up, it moves to a take on fast Lemonheads-style pop in spurs and leather.

He has an intense skill at what he does, creating an album that would be as friendly on a LiteRock station as it would the CD player of a cynical indie kid. It is overwhelmingly smooth, and stands by a track-by-track invitation to the listener to kick back and relax with him for a while.

Standout tracks are admittedly hard to pin down, because the mood of the album keeps a very graceful pace and is perfectly undisrupted. While the aforementioned cover and its follow-up, "All In", seek to break a little speed, it is only to show that his spirits are good. Fans of Rilo Kiley, The Jayhawks, and Lloyd Cole will definitely appreciate this charming, lightly dusty pop rodeo; and it will no doubt surprise those who didn't know they had a taste for such well-done Western nostalgia.

Reviewed by Sarah Peters
A former music editor and staff writer for LAS, Sarah Peters recently disappeared. Perhaps one day she will surface again, who knows.

See other reviews by Sarah Peters

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