If Ryan Adams were doing moody indie rock instead of moody Americana (and Taylor Swift covers), he might sound something like Small Black. And I chose the word “sound” specifically, because lyrically they’re nothing like him. There’s no whiney relationship stuff here (and don’t get me wrong: I love a good whiney relationship song; Counting Crows are one of my favorite bands). In fact, I can’t really say what their songs are about. I just know they create a mood that’s pensive, deep, and powerful. According to press materials, the album is about family and loss–and I definitely feel that–but more importantly it’s a drive-in-the-rain record. There are lines like “death is one thing, to be dead is another/It was the last thing on my mind.” What the Hell that means, I have no idea. But it definitely makes me feel.
In fact, the album feels about as blurry as its cover photo–distant, soft, and full of memory.
I LOVE this record.
Jagjaguwar offers a few direct-download mp3s and a stream.
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