John Vanderslice

John Vanderslice

Time Travel is Lonely

Barsuk

There’s a strangely folkish quality to the 13 songs on Time Travel is Lonely. This isn’t folk music, by any stretch — rather, it’s catchy indie pop of the highest order — but the combination of the yearning, raw quality in Vanderslice’s voice and the lyrical, storytelling quality of the songs makes it easy to see Vanderslice as a Dylan-esque troubadour, although his music bears little resemblance to the folkies. In fact, catchy songs like “Keep the Dream Alive,” with its multi-tracked vocals and keyboard flourishes, and “Little Boy Lost,” with its dissonant electronic feedback, are about as far away from folk (musically speaking) as my salary is from Bill Gates’. But this album should appeal to anyone who likes the raw, honest, storytelling vibe of folk music, songs like “You Were My Fiji,” “Everything Changed,” the title track, and especially “My Old Flame” cutting straight to the heart of the matter. And of course, indie pop fans will eat this up, as Vanderslice’s tunes have more hooks than your average tackle box. Highly recommended.

Barsuk Records, PO Box 22546, Seattle, WA 98122; http://www.barsuk.com

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