ICARUS HIMSELF | Career Culture

Madison, Wisconsin trio, Icarus Himself (started by Nick Whetro in 2008), posted its sophomore release, “Career Culture”, available for streaming at soundcloud today only. It follows in the wake of Icarus Himself’s 2010 EP, “Mexico”. This new 10-song LP is a mix of intoxicating sonic textures, intricate electronics, scorching electric guitar and eccentric psych-folk. The official release is October 11th on Science of Sound. The album opener, “Wake Up”, sets the ghostly tone of the album, with the hard-thumping percussion of drummer Brad Kolberg, and its quasi-Western rhythm akin to a band like Calexico. “Mornings At the Bar” is a drowsy hangover, highlighted with ambling, woozy and sparse electric guitar. Whetro’s vocal delivery is feathery and caressing. “WI via IN”, as evidenced by the song title, feels like a road-trip groove, tribal drumming and repeated backing vocals build into thunder of strings. Icarus Himself allow just enough room to let songs breath, keeping vocals and instrumentals balanced. “Half Moon Eyes” is a restrained backroads ditty about falling victim to love. It’s lyricism is slow-burning and sophisticated, beginning with a great storytelling verse, “I saw you from across the room …” “MCO” comes off like a Spoon track, the vocals set on high volume, delivered energetically between eruptions of guitar and hammering drums. Whetro gets a good deal of help on this record, including guests, Michael Gallope on keys (Janka Nabay & the Bubu Gang, Starring, Skeletons), Jonathan Lang on keys and clarinet, Jacqueline Kursel on cello, and Rob Ferrett on tenor sax. Follow the band on facebook and twitter. Pre-order “Career Culture” from bandcamp and you’ll get two digital tracks right away. The physical album will be released on both CD and limited-edition white vinyl. I highly recommend this record. It’s a beauty. Just listen to and download the single “On Your Side”, below, courtesy of the band. — David D. Robbins Jr.
Icarus Himself “On Your Side”

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