Jason Lytle

Yours Truly, the Commuter

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Frontman Jason Lytle did much of the heavy lifting throughout Grandaddy's career, juggling the roles of frontman, spokesman, and producer while also penning the band's material. He shouldered even more weight with 2006's Just Like the Fambly Cat, effectively finishing the album himself after the band disintegrated during the recording process. As a result, Lytle sounds confident and relaxed during his first "official" solo release, which explores the signature Grandaddy sound while nodding to Lytle's new home in Montana. Yours Truly, The Commuter is a gorgeously atmospheric record, a panorama of lush California landscapes filtered through the lonely lens of winter air and rural, mountainous terrain. There's a familiar mix of electronics and acoustic instruments here, but they're linked together more discreetly than before, with gauzy reverb and softly overdubbed harmonies smoothing out the gaps between both camps. "I may be limping, but I'm coming home," he sings on the title track, where orchestral strings and light, bedroom-whisper vocals create the sort of intimate symphony that Lytle so easily conducts. The drawl of his voice may be a poignant reminder of Grandaddy's early days, but Yours Truly is more cohesive than many of those past albums, a comforting hybrid of west coast beauty and stark, isolationist expanse that bodes well for his solo career.

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