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Boomkat Product Review:
Two figureheads of alternative Americana come together for this album: Jason Molina is the songwriter and frontman for bands Magnolia Electric Co. and Songs: Ohia, while Will Johnson leads Texan indie rockers Centro-matic and South San Gabriel. Over a ten-day period the two wrote and played together (reportedly using their downtime to drink and shoot BB guns) and finally arrived at this album of relentlessly melancholic, lamenting alt. country. While Molina's songwriting abilities are well-documented, Johnson proves to be the more revelatory presence on the record, offering wonderfully maudlin, slowly evolving laments like 'What You Reckon, What You Breathe', whose violin embellishments and vocal harmonies feel positively bombastic within the context of this incredibly low-key collection of songs. Other highlights arrive in the shape of the duet 'Almost Let You In' (complete with rickety, tape-warbling piano and weathered drum tracking) and Molina's bereft-sounding romanticism laid plain on 'Each Star Marks A Day', which swells with rusty slide guitar and bell-like rhodes piano. It's not exactly a party, but this record unflinchingly charts its protagonists' stark and lonesome journey into soul-searching rustic bleakness - at least they're in it together.