Friday, June 22, 2007

Besnard Lakes - The Besnard Lakes Are The Dark Horse

Besnard Lakes
The Besnard Lakes Are the Dark Horse
(2007, Jagjauwar)

OK, I never listened to much of the Beach Boys and still like to challenge their indie relevance a bit, but The Besnard Lakes Are The Dark Horse is not going to get through any review without a reference to the famed surfers. Like Brian Wilson leading an anthemic 70’s rock band through an early 90’s slowcore filter, The Besnard Lakes are a surprising revelation. After the first listen to BL’s glistening guitars and pitch perfect harmonies I thought it was a little too polished and a bit too average for my taste. Somehow, though, after that initial listen, Besnard Lake’s got their hooks in me and now, multiple listens later, the band has proved some unanticipated replay value. It is hazy music to be sure, disorienting you before you realize- this must be how they finally reel you in so you can’t let them go. There is something about the recordings that digs deep under your skin. A couple times there is even an air reminiscent of the score to The Labyrinth. If you’re not a fan of that movie don’t let it scar you. The Besnard Lakes are the real deal and a solid end of year contender for 2007.

-Mr. Thistle

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