Gramsci: Like Stray Voltage
By Shaun Chait
After a couple of received albums that have seen Gramsci develop an established sound separate from his solo recording persona, Paul McLaney and his guitarist/recording partner David Holmes are to be commended for putting the foot on the pedal and delivering a much more rock-based album third time around. The gorgeous textures and crooning/soaring voice are still there, but McLaney, Holmes and their accomplished band have zeroed in on some rock roots in place of some of the electronic stuff which first brought them together had previously been prevalent. Opening track Fall To Earth provides a stunning sonic statement and is probably my fave Gramsci track to date. The pace settles back a bit as they explore more established Gramsci territories on the likes of Each And Every Day and All The Time In The World, veering off every now and then into the manic chorus of Code or mind-bending guitar noise of Narrow Escapes. Recorded and mixed by Holmes at Kog, and mastered by Howie Weinberg at Masterdisk, NYC, it isn't always convincing but marks a nice left turn from this highly rated artist who seems intent on regularly testing new ground.