There was a rumor going around last year that Jade Tree was trying to sign Morrissey. That never happened, but on his latest Jade Tree release, Pedro the Lion's Dave Bazan has done his best to create a Morrissey album. The cerebral, weepy Bazan creates songs that are indelible in the ways Morrissey's are. They may not seem like the catchiest or most powerful melodies at first, but then they just hit you and everything changes. The first few times you hear the opening track, "Bands With Managers," it won't seem notable; eventually, you won't be able to get the damned thing out of your head. The songs that will probably stay with you permanently, though, are "Transcontinental" and "The Fleecing." Both are quiet tunes that overflow with emotion -- mostly sadness, but also some very un-Mozzer optimism. As Bazan sings on "The Fleecing": "Whom shall I blame for this sweet and heavy trouble/ For every stupid struggle, I don't know/ I could buy you a drink/ I could tell you all about it/ I could tell why I doubt it/ and why I still believe."
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