Sun Kil Moon, Universal Themes (Caldo Verde Records)
The Woodstock generation had Country Joe McDonald, whereas the Bonnaroo generation has Mark Kozelek, a.k.a. Sun Kil Moon, whose previous band, Red House Painters, reached its nonsense-zenith with an EP featuring two different cover versions of Ace Frehley’s “Shock Me.” At 48, he’s on his way to becoming the George Plimpton of sadcore, having been thrown a couple of movie roles by Cameron Crowe in addition to his myriad producing credits and fetish for covering a full spectrum of bands, from John Denver to Low. Universal Themes carries on Kozalek’s wingnut tradition: Accompanied only by Sonic Youth’s Steve Shelley on drums, Kozalek strums and tinkles his acoustic guitar, accompanying himself in an ever increasing filibuster of irrelevance, singing/chatting about his kooky groupies, watching TV, eating things, all the stuff that inspires neo-hippies to put on enraptured faces at festivals, whether or not they understand the context (they don’t). Pardon the sacrilege, but he could have just Kindled a book and saved some mixing-board electricity, if you really want to be green about it. C — Eric W. Saeger
As seen in the June 25, 2015 issue of the Hippo.