Granfaloon Bus

Lucky Curtains

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What a shame that Granfaloon Bus disbanded only three months after the release of Lucky Curtains if only because they were a band who was still making headway after 13 years of performing together. Lucky Curtains continues along the slightly more experimental production the band had hinted at since their 1999 release Good Funeral Weather and is similar to that release in that it is heavy on the slow numbers instead of the more balanced recordings Schlafwagen, Rocket Noon, and Exploded View. Felix Costanza's drowsy voice sounds a bit more defeated than on the band's previous outings, but the effect, whether intended or just a foreshadow of the group's approaching breakup, is a great one that sets the tone for the entire recording. Drummer Jeff Palmer's idiosyncratic fills are here again as are the atmospherics of guitarist Ajax Green and bassist Jeff Stevenson, but their collective sound has evolved into a more minimalist prism. One gets the feeling that the group was at a point where anything could happen and anything could be pulled off -- there's a freedom within the group to build ambience built on trust, which is all too rare in rock music and which adds to the intensity of Costanza's much lauded and unrestricted lyrical proficiency. Lucky Curtains is a good note to go out on, but also sad since it marks the passing of an honest group who never lowered its standards.

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