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Jul 28, 2014







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Canon Blue, Rumspringa
Temporary Residence Records, Aug. 16.

08/11/11



American singer Daniel James has it all, the Kmart-manager wardrobe, politely weird beard, a buddy in Grizzly Bear, you know, everything. Since the U.S. has too many people like that for its own good, he spent the last few years as a touring prop with Danish fringe-pop band Efterklang, the members of whom sent his demo around until he got signed, a happenstance that eventually found this delightful little surprise of a full-length playing in my car. “Orchestral pop” is the catch-all everyone seems to text in when reviewing this, but it’s not that simple; there’s a quirky-funky horn section proffering syncopation rather than melodic drama in the marching-band-steez opener “Chicago (Chicago),” a chill-rockout with a Katy Perry hook (“Autark [Nashville]”), things like this — whatever, what this guy is doing is pure fandom, as if he’s trying to fix his favorite Sufjan Stevens album by adding some rock, or speeding up and toning down Veckatimest simply because it’d be great stuff to listen to. Which you should. A     -Eric W. Saeger






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