Lackthereof – Your Anchor
Lackthereof is the solo side project of Menomena’s Danny Seim, although it seems that the day job doesn’t give him much time off as this is only his second album under this appellative since it’s conception in 1997 and the first in four years.
While Seim retains the experimentalism and intriguing instrumentations of Menomena, the tracks on ‘Your Anchor’ are largely more downbeat. ‘Chest Pass’ and ‘Fire Trial’ open the album gently, almost mournfully, but not without interest. Some very jerky percussion populate the backing of ‘Chest Pass’ and ‘Fire Trial’ is the possessor of some lovely drunken sounding slide guitar work.
The pace picks up a little with ‘Choir Practice’ and again some novel rhythmic work is well to the fore. As you get further in to the album it strikes that there is a certain Elbowness to the sound of many of the tracks, but just as you feel you know what’s going to happen Seim pulls a surprise. Both ‘Locked Upstairs’ and ‘Last November’ are reminiscent of Guy Garvey’s crew, however the way ‘Locked Upstairs’ slowly unravels in to discord is wonderfully surprising and ‘Locked Upstairs’ features a sudden key and pace change that is most unexpected.
Stylistically, there are definite nods in the direction of peers such as the likes of Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and those of that Singer / Songwriter ilk, but what sets this record apart is the imagination of the musical accompaniment. The songs just never quite end up where they appear to be going when the set out and that makes for interesting listening.
This album is a grower, methinks, and will reward patient, repeated listening, disgorging its treasures a little at a time to those willing to make the effort.
Top Tracks: ‘Locked Upstairsl’, ‘Last November’.
Released 04/08/2008 on City Slang