Kelley Stoltz: Circular Sounds (SubPop/Rhythmethod)

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Kelley Stoltz: Gardenia
Kelley Stoltz: Circular Sounds (SubPop/Rhythmethod)

These one-man-band singer-songwriters such as Richard Swift, Jude, Hobotalk and others who have appeared in Elsewhere are just so irritatingly good they send you into a spin.

As with those others mentioned Stoltz from San Francisco (who multi--tracks just about every instrument here) sounds like something more than the sum of his considerable influences: you don't have to be too smart to hear alt.folk, a smidgen of acid-influenced late 60s pop-rock, the Monkees and other 60s bands, a touch of post-punk pop, the audaciousness and ambition of Harry Nilsson . . .

Much admired by the British media for his previous three albums (that figures, the Beatles' increasingly respected Rubber Soul/Revolver-period is somewhere in here too), Stoltz isn't averse to a little handclap psychedelic pop (I Nearly Lost My Mind) and not unhappy writing a memorable chorus either -- something of a lost art these days.

This is music that will put a smile on your face and its lowkey, lo-fi quality is very endearing.

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