New Madrid: Sunswimmer (New West) - album review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Issue #49 - February/March 2014 - PortlandiaNew Madrid


New West

Mar 03, 2014 Issue #49 - February/March 2014 - Portlandia Bookmark and Share

Yardboat, the 2012 debut from this Athens four-piece, was mostly, with exception of one 10-minute atmospheric instrumental, a psych-tinged Americana album with interesting lead guitar work and an understated melodicism. By this standard, the band’s follow up is a disappointment. The album’s second track, “Manners,” succeeds with propulsive drive and a catchy effected-guitar riff. But elsewhere, the songs on Sunswimmer do not live up to those on the band’s debut. The tracks here are largely uninteresting, droning, and losing themselves in airy nothingness. Melodies are so understated as to nearly disappear. The album’s final two tracks both clock in at over 11 minutes, and while the closer, “And She Smiles,” employs some expressive guitar textures and minimal build, it’s too little too late. Yardboat was exciting in its contrasts, its push and pull, and ultimately its balance between guitar-based rock and spacey aura. The songs on Sunswimmer plod. (

Author rating: 3/10

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Average reader rating: 9/10


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Cyndi \M/
March 6th 2014

I could not disagree with you more. Such a shallow review of such a deep, quality record. 10/10

Robert Kelly
March 6th 2014

Mr. Valish, your analysis is incorrect. However, thanks for trying.