State Bird / Mostly Ghostly
Album: Mostly Ghostly   Collection:General
Artist:State Bird   Added:Mar 2008
Label:The Record Machine  

A-File Activity
Add Date: 2008-05-04 Pull Date: 2008-07-06
Week Ending: Jul 6 Jun 1 May 11
Airplays: 2 1 2

Recent Airplay
1. Jul 04, 2008: Oatmeal: American as the 4th of July
I Saw The Light
4. May 09, 2008: Music to Make Babies To
The Golden Glowing Mask
2. Jun 30, 2008: Interminable Nonsense
An Accident In The Woods
5. May 06, 2008: Palo Alto Pop Overthrow
An Accident In The Woods
3. May 27, 2008: I once was Canadian
The Hollerin' Mountains

Album Review
Phil Andrews
Reviewed 2008-04-27
Mostly Ghostly by State Bird: Sufjan Stevens, Sufjan Stevens, Sufjan Stevens. this is a curious record. There are so many elements here. How many people are in this band? It's got the feeling as if it's been constructed by one genius musician (i.e. Sufjan Stevens) or about 10 talented, exploring musicians (perhaps as a collective). Many of the songs seem to have two or more distinct passages that are woven together into one song.

Watch out: many of the tracks end early, so there's several seconds of silence at the end.
1: not really a song, more like spliced recording outtakes. intro track, whistling with accordian, some silences.
2: The Decemberists-ish vocals, prominent fuzzy bass, horns, a mandolin (or perhaps ukulele) various percussion. very full busy soundscape in this song.
*8: bass, xylophone, horns. song gets quiet and simple at 2:30-3:00 but then comes rolling back. hard end at -0:06.
9: starts soft but punchy. Gets loud half way through. track ends at -0:06
10: very present ukulele, soft male+fem vox, hand drum. dizzying, rhythm-based stereo panning for many instruments. song builds up towards the end with snare, horns everywhere.
11: vocal samples of cheering all over the place, some played in reverse. truly a racket, as the title suggests. no lyrics, but not an instrumental track either.
12: strummy guitar, screetching/ringing noise, whistling, weak male vocals. track ends at +3:30/-0:25

RIYL: Sufjan Stevens, The Decemberists / FCC: All clean / REC: 4, 7, 8
Personal observation: the person who mixed this album must have been amused with themselves for panning various instruments all over the place. They should get over themselves and focus on producing something listenable in headphones. There's a lot of beautiful music here that's been clobbered by a crappy mix and sloppy mastering. (I wouldn't complain if everything about the record was experimental, or lo-fi. But it's not.) I expect that this group's next album will take them places. 3 of 5 stars.

Track Listing
1. Story Of The Last Pilgrim And Indian   7. Ghost King Pt. 2
2. I Saw The Light   8. An Accident In The Woods
3. Ghost King Pt. 1   9. Streams Of Light
4. The Hollerin' Mountains   10. The Golden Glowing Mask
5. Cathedral Tunes   11. Whts All The Racket In Our Haunted Attic
6. A Voice As Old As Fire   12. Hair Of The Buffalo