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Day 165: Maps & Atlases – Perch Patchwork

12 Aug

Pigeon

I’ll be the first to admit that Swole Ear is not perfect.  It has its share of flaws, of which a fair number have revealed themselves over the past 165 days.  The biggest problem with this blog is that it’s a huge pain in the ass (for me) to listen to a new record every day.   On a more relevant note, however, sometimes it’s hard to judge an album after a single listen.

I have no idea whether I like Maps & Atlases or not, and here’s why: they sound a bit like Grizzly Bear.  Regular readers of this blog know that I loathe Grizzly Bear and all of their imitators with a burning passion.  Let’s just say, if you’re pretentious enough to refer to your music as “art rock,” it probably won’t sit too well with me.

Maps & Atlases isn’t straight-up obnoxious art rock, though.  Sure, it has its share of annoying, drawn out intros, lame little guitar riffs disguised as intricate and important behind their never ending repetition, even an ill-advised attempt at vocal harmonization every now and then.  There’s more going on here, though.   I hear plenty of bands other than Grizzly Bear in Perch Patchwork.  The lyrics (or at least their delivery) often resemble that of Okkervil River, and the treble guitar is reminiscent of Vampire Weekend at points, and those are two bands that I like and respect.

I guess I’ll have to give this record a few more spins before I can make the call.  For now, I’ll have to give it the benefit of the doubt and move on, as there’ll be another post tomorrow.  And the next day.  And the next day…


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