Living Together

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That rare side project driven not by ego but by a genuine desire to attempt something new and different, Vermont's Living Together is a dramatic departure from Davey Von Bohlen and Dan Didier's work in the Promise Ring -- although the two groups share the same sharply honed melodic sensibility, here the emphasis is not on the visceral intensity of past efforts but rather a spartan, slow-burning melancholy ideally suited to the poignancy of Von Bohlen's lyrics. What the disc's tender, introspective approach lacks in sonic power is more than made up by its emotional heft, however -- stripped of the Promise Ring's frenzied attack, the simplicity and honesty of Von Bohlen's songs cut deeper than ever.

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