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Fresh And Onlys : Long Slow Dance

In terms of productivity 2012 has already been something of a banner year for fuzzy San Francisco garage rockers the Fresh & Onlys, and with solid solo albums from guitarist Wymond Miles and singer Tim Cohen (in his Magic Trick guise) attracting positive reviews one might reasonably worry that spreading themselves so thin could have a detrimental effect on the quality of their new material. Thankfully, the reality is quite the opposite: fourth long-player Long Slow Dance (LSD, geddit?) is by far the best album the quartet have recorded, playing to the strengths identified by Cohen and Miles’ extracurricular outings and filtering out previous efforts’ more generic elements. So we get the jaunty “No Regard” and the spiky “Yes Or No” and “Fire Alarm”; and “20 Days And 20 Nights”, which hits the sweet spot where Arthur Lee’s Love meets the Smiths. But we also get the twanging “Presence Of Mind” (below) and sweeping, gothic “Executioner’s Song” that draw from the same influences (Roy Orbison, Echo & The Bunnymen) as Miles’ Under The Pale Moon (the latter given a psychedelic twist via mariachi horn fanfares), and “Foolish Person”, which marries Spector-esque bombast and fuzzy psychedelia to greater effect than anything Cohen has yet produced under the Magic Trick moniker. Elsewhere, “Dream Girls” manages to recall the excellent Magnetic Fields with its wry lyrics and doo-wop country swing, but best of all is the gorgeous title track, which is not only the highlight of the album but one of the loveliest songs you’ll hear all year.

Long Slow Dance is out September 3 via Souterrain Transmissions/ Mexican Summer


About foamhands

My name is Michael Dix; I'm a decade or so past being down with the kids, but to me new music never gets old. Apparently I like music that sounds like faulty kitchen appliances and ritual slaughter; really I just like what I like, whether that happens to be indie, pop, punk, hip hop, metal, electronica, Afrobeat or jazz. Follow me on Twitter @FoamHandsBlog to receive notifications of new posts and the occasional random brain-fart, and please share links wherever you can. Enjoy!

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