Jason Lytle | Yours Truly, the Commuter

Anti- (2009)
By MIKAEL WOOD  |  May 18, 2009
1.5 1.5 Stars

090515_jlytle_main2

Give Jason Lytle credit for consistency: throughout his first solo album since the 2006 break-up of his long-running indie-rock outfit Grandaddy, he clings to the syrupy space-folk sound he pioneered on such self-consciously widescreen epics as The Sophtware Slump, Grandaddy's wryly titled 2000 peak.

In a scene overwhelmed by guys whose idea of an artistic sensibility is a Best New Music prize from Pitchfork, here's a man with an instantly identifiable æsthetic. Too bad that æsthetic is becoming kind of a chore to endure.

Inspired, we're told, by his move from the vast openness of rural Northern California to the vast openness of rural Montana, Yours Truly, the Commuter offers up plenty of the dreamy vocal melodies and vintage-keyboard fuzz Lytle is known for, but with none of the whimsy or wonder of his best stuff. The music simply crawls by in a maddeningly static mid-tempo blur, going about its melancholy business on the way to nowhere.

That might be Lytle's theme here — he's always been obsessed with notions of futility and obsolescence. If so, dude's gotten better at his job than he needs to be.

  Topics: CD Reviews , Entertainment, Music, Jason Lytle,  More more >
| More


Most Popular
ARTICLES BY MIKAEL WOOD
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   THE CHEMICAL BROTHERS | FURTHER  |  July 07, 2010
    Astralwerks (2010)
  •   DEVO | SOMETHING FOR EVERYBODY  |  July 01, 2010
    Given the theory of de-evolution these Ohio brainiacs began expounding more than 30 years ago, it makes a sad kind of sense that Devo's first album since 1990's Smooth Noodle Maps offers such a charmless, base-level version of the band's synth-addled new wave.
  •   TAIO CRUZ | ROKSTARR  |  June 24, 2010
    When Taio Cruz sings, "I can't live without you," in "Take Me Back," pop-song conventions tell us he's referring to a lover.
  •   THE FUTUREHEADS | THE CHAOS  |  June 16, 2010
    "I wish that I could stop the noise," sings Barry Hyde not long into The Chaos . It sure doesn't seem that way.
  •   BETTYE LAVETTE | INTERPRETATIONS: THE BRITISH ROCK SONGBOOK  |  June 01, 2010
    Bettye LaVette’s previous two albums had titles that required a little digging to unpack.

 See all articles by: MIKAEL WOOD