(10.2007, Dead Oceans)
Pride has me so confused. I am incredibly split on this album, probably more so than ever. There are tracks that I love and can listen to on repeat all day long, but there are some tracks that make me cringe. I can hardly get through them in order to review the album. It's a complete Dr. Jekyl/ Mr. Hyde transformation as Matthew Houck voice goes from hauntingly beautiful to nails on a chalk board obnoxious, and the music goes from mellow experimental to the slowest most boring and whiny alt-country you've ever heard. The sleepers number in about half, but the tracks that are good are SO good that it's definitely worth a listen. Opener "A Picture Of Our Torn Up Praise" sounds exceptionally good on vinyl. It has a layered howling Houck, a low bass percussive rumble, a gorgeous melody and beautiful movement between chorus and verse. "Be In The Dark" and "The Waves At Night" are slow, but not quite to unbearable yet. they still contain the layered folk yips and tunes, and are very reminiscent of being inside cuddled up during a thunder storm, or walking along an Oregon coastline. "At Death, A Proclamation" is a modern day Paul Simon's Rhythm Of The Saints, and my favorite track on the album. It's a redemptive track with swelling vocals and rudimentary percussion. Those are the four best tracks. Those along with the incredibly annoying "Wolves" are the first five tracks of the eight track album. The last three songs slowly sinks into monotonous country with crawling brush stick drumming. I can't finish the album very often. I'm not joking when I say it's unbearably slow and whiny. So there it is, leaving me confused and wondering.
Phosphorescent - "A Picture Of Our Torn Up Praise"