Magnetic Morning


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Oh, what a beautiful album! Oh, what a beautiful band! With apologies to Rodgers & Hammerstein, a record this full of shimmering depth and dark twists and turns deserves exclamation. By adding three members (including keyboardist Jimmy LaValle from the Album Leaf), Swervedriver frontman Adam Franklin and Interpol drummer Sam Fogarino leave behind the experimental-duo-making-soundtrack-pop bliss of their debut EP and blow it right out of the water. A.M. is a beguilingly full-band effort, which again grasps the poorly recalled slower side of Swervedriver -- only it prettifies it and adds a wide-spectrum, kaleidoscopic lushness. Additionally, the Fogarino/Franklin tunes feel more fully developed, eliciting copious hooks and not relying so much on repetition. The result is something like adored '80s Brit records like Tony Fletcher Walked on Water (Chameleons), Heads and Hearts (the Sound), and Fiction (Comsat Angels), with '60s sweeteners such as the Rolling Stones' Their Satanic Majesties Request and Love's Four Sail. (Although the covers are the Shangri-Las' 1965 number 53 classic "Out in the Streets" -- also recently covered by the New York Dolls -- and a harrowing rethink of Kraftwerk's 1974 "Autobahn" lyrics, "Motorway.") The denser side of Swervedriver also surfaces on "No Direction" and the aforementioned "Motorway," only filtered through Fogarino and mates' fluid brush strokes, adding murky aggression. For 38 minutes, A.M. gives a shiver effect. Don't miss.

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