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Boomkat Product Review:
Pearly Gate Music is the alias of solo artist Zach Tillman, younger brother of J. Tillman, whom you may already know as the drummer in Fleet Foxes as well as a lone singer-songwriter in his own right. Zach proves that big bro Josh didn't get all the talent in the Tillman family across ten beautiful, often very scrappily recorded tracks. On the opening track 'Golden Funeral' the whole piece comes coated in hiss and crackle, except this isn't the 'good' sort of background noise - no Victrola noise here - but rather the kind of high-pitched digital grind heard when you're recording straight into a laptop's in-built mic (and you can hear the hard drive whirring just as loudly as the thing you're trying to record). Oddly this really suits the song, and despite the awkward lo-fi feel, Tillman's voice is clear and confident as grand, glowing chords swell up stealthily in the background. 'Golden Funeral' sets the scene for an album full of hastily put together productions that aptly capture the kind of frail, intimate songwriting on offer. With the assistance of Fleet Fox Josh on drums, Zach carves out a series of one-mic type acoustic cuts such as the Simon & Garfunkel influenced 'Navy Blues', throwing in the occasional hard-rocking, electrified number like 'Gossamer Hair' or the classic rocking 'Bad Nostalgia', which brings to mind Devendra Banhart at his least ridiculous. Good stuff.