Spindrift

The West

by Sarah Moore

17 February 2009

 

Spindrift weaves through genres comfortably, intellectually exploring spaghetti Western, California psych, honky tonk, klezmer—all while remaining sonically appealing and cohesive on their first full-length. Frontman Kirkpatrick Thomas calls the mix a “pastiche,” music that combines notions of prior musical eras with a contemporary presence. Spindrift culls members of the Brian Jonestown Massacre among the eight musicians shifting amongst such instrumentation as baritone guitar (Henry Evans), autoharp and harmonium (Marcos Diableros) and Thomas’ Casio digital guitar.

The druggy swaying of the album is based on a specific era and set of emotions. The companion piece to their soundtrack to the film The Legend of God’s Gun, The West aches with possibility and adventure, while capturing the essence of a wild, expansive and unexplored Western frontier. Right away with opening track “The Isle of Lost Souls”, the band morphs their sound from a deserted carnival calliope to unfold as a bubbling Danny Elfman-inspired manifesto. The dissonant fallen angel chorus together with the heavy kick drum and what is perhaps a sousaphone-cloaked MeloSonic keyboard (Julie Patterson) evoke images of Tim Burton’s eerie films. With such a hefty cast and vast sound spaces to explore, The West‘s depth exudes a wild frontier.

cover art

Spindrift

The West

(Beat the World)
US: 11 Nov 2008

The West

Rating:

 

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