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Blanket Music – Cultural Norms

This isn’t a bad thing: Blanket Music strikes first as the mellow side of the Velvet Underground with a post-op Nico in a Hawaiian shirt. Nearly un-amped guitar accompanies a delicate dusk walk on a beach with well-practiced uneasy vocals–as if the beach is covered with jagged rocks.


All of a sudden it dawns on me that this is rocking. The bass lines walk up a flight of stairs with the grace of three drinks and feeling sexy, and then cliff dive skillfully back into range. And what is this? The subtlest disco beat ever! The VU didn’t do disco! For that matter, Belle and Sebastian don’t do funky lounge jazz, though they probably wished they could after they heard this.

The voice is a perfect whisper of tone that sometimes quivers…sort of like
Connor Oberst’s, but it’s a mature and complex voice. It’s a voice that knows the golden triangle, the law of threes, the importance of emotion and all that other stuff that’s pleasing to the human senses.

It’s a collection of instruments fighting to see which one can be the most well-behaved, refusing to be that guy that plays a little too out. It’s a sonic twist on Little Red School House, especially as the album plays on, flawless for what it is accomplishing stylistically, and imperfect by intention. Are they playing in the living room, or is this still the CD?!


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