Music | CD Revue: Pontiak & Angela Desveaux | CD Reviews | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly
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Music » CD Reviews

Music | CD Revue: Pontiak & Angela Desveaux

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Pontiak Sun on Sun
It’s rare to find a band so immersed in their surroundings as Pontiak. Hailing from Virginia, every track on Sun on Sun drips with backwoods rural rock that us cityfolk often find unnerving. The album opens with “Shell Skull,” a guitar-driven creeper that sounds like a biker-bar staple pulled through a sludge factory. When the chorus picks up, the backing vocals strike in a haunting and lonesome tone akin to some Appalachian campfire story. However, any attempts to kick up the tempo usually fall flat and the band nestles back into comfortable lurching. “White Hands” begins with exciting metal guitar/drum interplay but it quickly becomes half-hearted and boring. The middle songs are too long which, with only seven songs on the album, feel like the band is trying to unnecessarily stretch the length of the record; “White Mice” is seven minutes that doesn’t get interesting until four minutes in when they kick up the Southern creepiness. Even the back-porch sing-along closer “The Brush Burned Fast” benefits from underlying menace and ghostly vocals. Thrill Jockey

Angela Desveaux The Mighty Ship
Leave it to a Canadian to show us how to make a country album. Not that anything on the Nova Scotia resident’s second album is revolutionary—Desveaux just reminds us why artists like Dolly Parton became so big in the first place. By masterfully mixing Southern bittersweet harmonies with modern alt-country, The Mighty Ship is simultaneously heartbreaking, accessible and instantly digestible. “The Other Side” starts thing off with an acoustic guitar accompanied by wistful lap steel; despite the beautiful combination, it quickly becomes clear that Desveaux’s voice is the shining instrument here. Her voice is so effortless and light, an impressive task considering her songs can make a grown man cry. She can sometimes veer into pop territory (especially on the schmaltzy “Sure Enough”) but the muffled waltz of the title track will make you consider moving to Memphis.
Thrill Jockey

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