First off, it's a CD—not an LP. I'm bending the rules a little bit for this one because it's well...great.
Lawrence Arabia, who opens for Crowded House tonight at Wolf Trap, has been on my radar since last Winter, when I wrote:
"Methinks if John Lennon were still kicking around, we'd have this bit of canny song craft perfection on the regular—if he were in top form, that is.
A former member of bands like The Ruby Suns (Sub Pop), The Brunettes and The Reduction Agents as well as a touring member of Okkervil River, Lawrence Arabia—the savant-like songwriting alter ego of James Milne—is shedding his sideman status and stepping alone into the bright light of the U.S. music scene with Chant Darling.
The album is his first full-length on Bella Union, the UK-based label credited with discovering hallmark influencers Fleet Foxes, Midlake, Beach House and Explosions in the Sky among others.
Already receiving four-star reviews from UK tastemakers like Mojo and Uncut, Chant Darling melds irreverent lyrics with West Coast melodies and lush harmonies, playing like a modern take on the work of classic popsmiths like Jonathan Richman, John Lennon and Brian Wilson.
The first single from Chant Darling ‘Apple Pie Bed,’ received New Zealand’s highest songwriting honor the Silver Scroll award this past September."
I think this one's worth bending our 'vinyl only' rule but we'll let you decide. Pipe up in the comments to this post to enter to win an autographed copy of "Chant Darling" and the most stellar comment will be sent the (egad) CD. We'll give you until this Friday (7/30) and remember to leave us a contact email address!
Lawrence Arabia - Apple Pie Bed (Mp3)
Authorized for download!