Cass McCombs

Ah yes, another singer songwriter. Just what the world needs. Someone else to croon wistfully about love, life and the state of the world; to share their pain and anguish accompanied by an organ or acoustic guitar. So here's "Prefection" the second album by storyteller, and indie rock introvert Cass McCombs and it's not half bad. But the key word here is half. "Prefection" is a floaty breeze of an album with nonchalant grooves that falls short of being anything other than arty shoegaze as McCombs tries to get all epic on us. Not Jerry Bruckheimer epic but as epic as singer/songwriter's get. You know, crashing cymbals, twinkling guitars and sparkly organ. McCombs' voice flitters somewhere between Robert Smith's giggly alcoholic and Thom Yorke's lazy pull. And there will be panic on the streets of London when folks realize this emotional troubadour is actually from the home of the Orioles; Baltimore, Maryland. But "Prefection" does have some diamonds lying beneath all the rough of McCombs wannabe opulence. "Tourist Woman" has some bounce to it, and just the right amount for a rigorous head-nod and a light toe-tap. The organ of "Subtraction" is a mid-day sunshower that comes at the right moment. "Sacred Heart" is pure pop pleasure a la Smiths and "Bury Mary" is a swinging good time. "Prefection" is like the tortured looking indie-rocker with the Jeff Buckley voice who works at your local Starbucks that you're too shy to talk to. Talk to him and you'll see he doesn't have much to say.

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