Music

CD Short: Cass McCombs

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Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Big Wheel and Others

(Domino)

In press materials accompanying this latest release from solo musician McCombs, the tag “double album” is shrugged off with a line that says such labeling implies “bloat, prog, and concept.” Instead, listeners are urged to just “stick with songs.” And, coming in at 22 tracks, this record sure has plenty of tunes.

Some are understated rockers, like the title cut and the country-tinged “Joe Murder.” Other times the focus is on different takes on the same material—“Brighter!” appears twice, once sung by McCombs and the other sung by the recently deceased actress Karen Black.

Interspersed amidst all the songs are excerpts from the 1970 documentary Sean, which chronicled the thoughts of a 4-year old boy who lived with his parents in Haight-Ashbury during the ’60s. Though the exact purpose of the clips is unclear, such far-reaching experimentation is par for the course. Fans should get ready to dig deep.

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