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Luke Top

Friends

(Slow Death/Revolver; US: 23 Jun 2009; UK: Import)

Luke Top, a southern Californian by way of Tel Aviv, has recently released his debut album, Friends, a sunny California rock record. Collaborating with fellow LA musicians such as Cass McCombs and Foreign Born, Top, also a co-founder of Afro-Hebrew dance band Fool’s Gold, mostly recorded Friends himself in a backyard bungalow, and as its title suggests, Friends reflects a fertile LA music scene in its cast of instrumentation. The end result is an Americana afternoon siesta, a hazy and lazy sort of stupor (with falsetto harmonies). The title track, a chanting, meditative piece, conjures an Akron/Family-like collective, as its polyrhythms and shimmering guitars against Top’s dreamy David Byrne-like lead vocals bring to mind sunny LA in the 1980s.

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