Rosebuds, The - Sand + Silence

Regular price $ 19.99

The notion that time heals all wounds is ultimately false, but the passage of a few years does make the pain less vivid, which is borne out on the Rosebuds' sixth album, Sand+Silence. Released in 2011, Loud Planes Fly Low was recorded in the wake of the divorce of the group's founders, Ivan Howard and Kelly Crisp, and it wasn't hard to hear the tension and heartbreak lurking in the songs. Three years later, the Rosebuds sound a bit dour, as they so often do, but the edge of disappointment has faded, and a faint hope has returned on Sand+Silence's 11 songs. Howard's friend and occasional collaborator Justin Vernon (of Bon Iver) co-produced the album (with BJ Burton) as well as handling guitars, keyboards, and percussion, and while he might seem like a curious choice to bring a breezy pop sound to numbers like "Mine Mine Mine" or "Death of an Old Bike," the results sound playful and freewheeling, but rich and full of smart details that reveal themselves on repeated plays, while "In My Teeth," "Tiny Bones," and the title cut reflect the more downbeat chamber pop approach that's been the Rosebuds' stock in trade since their sophomore effort, 2005's Birds Make Good Neighbors. Though Howard and Crisp are in good (well, clearly better) spirits on Sand+Silence, it's worth noting that she seems to be a somewhat muted presence on these sessions; she helped write all the songs, but her contributions in the studio are limited to piano and harmony vocals, while Howard handles all the lead vocals (sounding strong and emotionally eloquent) as well as various guitars and keyboards, and four other musicians are on hand to fill out the subtle but sometimes dense arrangements. However the principals have made their compromises, Sand+Silence shows Howard and Crisp are committed to keeping this band alive, and the album confirms they're still an uncommonly smart and talented indie pop band with a great deal to offer.

1 In My Teeth 4:28
2 Sand + Silence 5:15
3 Give Me a Reason 4:03
4 Blue Eyes 2:48
5 Mine Mine 3:28
6 Wait a Minute 3:50
7 Esse quam videri 3:45
8 Death of an Old Bike 3:32
9 Looking For 3:10
10 Walking 1:59
11 Tiny Bones 4:15