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v/a - In My Living Room


A even dozen tracks, recorded in Andy's living room-cum-studio. Appropriately, the feeling is acoustic and intimate. Tracks from Ida, Richard Davies, Mary Timony (Helium) and Karate showcase these artists in a setting far more personal than you might have heard on other records, and the balance of artists, though unfamiliar, easily keeps the pace. Little details reign here, despite the seeming low-budget approach, and songs like Ida's "Losing True," with the heavenliest vocal harmonies I've heard in a long time, make me want to darken the lights and pretend it's after hours with some talented friends.


Jeff Norman

The title of this CD is literal: label guy Andy (no last name) cajoled a bunch of indie-rock heavyweights to record songs in the intimate setting of his living room. Andy's at pains to reassure the listener this isn't some hiss-filled four-track festival: the cover calls the recording "hi-fidelity," and he thanks the manufacturers of his recording gear in the liner notes for helping him achieve good sound.

The virtue of this recording method is its directness and intimacy, perhaps best exemplified by Ida's lovely take on the Roches' "Losing True" - which ends with singer Liz Mitchell working Andy's cat into a rich purr. This is unlikely to happen at a big-ass professional recording facility. (Okay, I like this because I'm a cat-lover - and it says not a whole lot about the music. But music is about more than the notes - at its best, it is a social phenomenon, a way people communicate with one another.)

Other name acts bringing nicely understated performances include Mary Timony (on leave from Helium and demonstrating once more her quirky but compelling songcraft), Seana Carmody (ex-Swirlies and Syrup USA), Richard Davies, and solo folks from Secret Stars, Mistle Thrush, Karate, and uh, Buffalo Tom (Chris Colbourn, who acquits himself well). Karate actually kicks up a minor storm (annoying Andy's neighbors, apparently), but in general this is fine late-night listening. Bring your own cat.

>>> Jeff Norman

All Music Guide

AMG EXPERT REVIEW: According to the liner notes by "Andy" (no last name given), this compilation was an outgrowth of his "putting together a home studio to do hi-fi recordings of bands in a living room environment." These tracks were, apparently, recorded in a living room or something like it, and meant for listening in a living room situation as well, since most of it is low-key alternative rock with a folky bent. There aren't any big names here, unless you count Richard Davies, but you might recognize Mary Timony (of Helium) and Chris Colbourn (of Buffalo Tom), who use this as an opportunity for a solo side project outing. It's pleasant, if not essential, stuff that's more agreeable than compelling. The tracks by Ida and Valerie have nice female harmonies that add sonic variety; Seana Carmody's "Crystallized Your World" sounds a little like the kind of folk-rock played by Penelope Houston. -- Richie Unterberger


The vomit-inducing self-serving "perfect" "pop" of Richard "Everything I Do Comes In Inverted Commas" Davies begins this dire compilation of... oh god... slowcore. God, how we wish the white indie boys of mid-America had never heard (i) a country guitar, (ii) Codeine, and (iii) any music whatsoever. Irritatingly enough, both Helium's Mary Timony and Buffalo Tom's Chris Colbourn--folk who should know better--contribute their own unique brands of minimal baroque rock (Timony) and full-on angst (Colbourn) right in the middle of this otherwise forgettable 12-song set. ET



albums préférés de 1999

silver jews - american water
mogwai - mogwai ep
the black heart procession - 2
a silver mt. zion - he has left us alone, ...
kimchee records - in my living room
the get up kids - 4 minute mile
appendix out - daylight savings
early day miners - placer found
san augustin - arnokhali
do make say think - goodbye enemy airship ...



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