[9 December 2010]
For the uninitiated, Sundowner is the name under which one Chris McCaughan of Chicago, IL plies his solo material. Though McCaughan is more widely known as the six-string slinger from the belovedly besotted Windy City punk trio the Lawrence Arms, Sundowner tends to be a more reserved and introspective affair. Largely acoustic, these 10 songs are darker than you’d figure, but still catchy as all get-out. Three years after his debut Sundowner release, Four Five One Two, McCaughan returns with We Chase the Waves courtesy of long-time crony Mike Park and his Asian Man Records. As is the norm, Los Angeles bandmate (and well-regarded engineer about town) Neil Hennesey plays a large role in the proceedings, manning the boards and stepping into the bass slot when necessary. Despite being recorded in their respective living rooms, We Chase the Waves has a lush, layered vibe, with doubled vocals and rich reverb-dappled tones that breed a more intimate experience than the post-Jawbreaker rock of their main gig. It’s equally apropos for quiet nights and hungover mornings.