Review - Rendezvous

Artist: Luna

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The one thing Dean Wareham learned from his days in Galaxie 500 is that boredom can only take you so far. Like Yo La Tengo, with whom both Galaxie and now Luna share many of the same traits – initial Velvet Underground worship, lifeless singers, incongruous critical respect – Wareham realized early they weren't going to survive on influences alone. So, while Wareham's singing and songwriting hasn't moved beyond basic chords, his guitar textures have been steadily improving. "Malibu Love Nest," the lead-off track from Luna's seventh studio album, is nothing more than a standard I-IV progression but it sounds so much more impressive. And after a handful of tracks threaten to solidify things into molten monotony, guitarist Sean Eden steps in to take the mic and songwriting duties with "Broken Chair" and "Still at Home." Melodies sharpen and voices carry with newfound authority. It might be time for Mr. Wareham to acknowledge that it would be best for all parties considered if he'd take the early retirement package from center stage and let some of the new folks attempt the heavy lifting.

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