Station to Station

Andrew Pekler

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Station to Station Review

by Andy Kellman

The quick, messy way to describe this record is "a blend of jazzbo post-rock à la Tortoise and wobbly micro-dub à la most of Pole's (Stefan Betke) Scape label." For this record, which has nothing to do with David Bowie at all, Andrew Pekler combines his jazz leanings with his past material as Sad Rockets and, with help from some friends (upright bassist Akiro Ando, saxophonist Elliott Levin, pianist Kiwi Menrath, trumpeter Aaron Czemy), comes up with a very loose-limbed fusion of the man-made and the man-manipulated. These eight laid-back micro-grooves thrive on little details, like the human handclaps on the title track, or the way certain songs begin in a specific place and slowly slink toward somewhere relatively foreign where you'd hardly expect them to land. Two of the album's best songs are buried near the end. "Manchild" is a simmering Berlin dub production with some wild sax squawks on top, and the noir-ish "Steam" combines a swanky Barry Adamson-style soundtrack number with nestling bleeps. The rest of the album slides by unobtrusively, just kind of hanging there, and works better as a background to reading or maybe even napping. The elements could have made for a stuffy listen, but the overall effect is pleasant, if not all that riveting.

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