CD Review: Brown Shoe

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Brown Shoe

Jackalope

Self-released; Release date: Sept. 30, 2008

The Deal: The California-based indie band Brown Shoe releases third album Jackalope.

The Good: The album begins with “Take This Paper And Burn It,” a song that by far is the best. Jingly keys and drum cymbals along with the other instruments make the song an eccentric blend of experimental pop and the lyrics are catchy as well. “Jackalope” is another catchy craft with chants like If it’s all over then let it be over, ‘cause I can’t say it again. The band’s sound is riveting with a mix of dreamy harmonies tinged with wistful tones for an uplifting listen. “Lightfoot” is another highlight, starting slow and moving into spastic sounds – including those of created by a tap dancer. Throughout the entire album the songs, which are sometimes a bit hypnotic prove to be textured with care. The last track (chiming in at over six minutes) is titled “Hey.” It’s mostly instrumental with a few yells and a full-fledged escapade of noise.

The Bad: Not much. On the first listen a few songs sound similar, but after another the tracks are more distinctive and it’s easy to see that Brown Shoe will be saluted in the indie-rock world for this effort.

The Verdict: A great album from a band you’ve probably never heard before. Brown Shoe’s lulling melodies resemble those of Sigur Ros, Coldplay and Bright Eyes. Jackalope is full of mesmeric rhythms that will astound.

Brown Shoe will perform with Building the State at Snug Harbor on Oct. 19, at 9 p.m. For more information, visit www.snugrock.com or www.brownshoemusic.com.

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