Boomkat Product Review:
Chicago band Maps & Atlases have the honour of clocking up the 100th album release on Fat Cat with this, their debut full-length Perch Patchwork. It's a sophisticated and multi-layered construction that situates the band's work somewhere in the same order as US indie-rock's more interesting names, such as Grizzly Bear or Menomena. After the ear-catching experimental splutter of intro piece 'Will', 'The Charm' arrives as a mighty onslaught of vocals and ornate, martial percussion, while following on, 'Living Decorations' manages to convert all this sonic power into something with more substantial impetus and that's more overtly song-shaped. At their most melodic the band crank out the Afro-pop influenced baroque-folk of 'Israeli Caves', which makes them sound like Vampire Weekend's country-dwelling cousins. Getting further into the track sequence, occasionally mind-boggling technical chops and flashy interlocking instrumentation really help the record shine, as on the excellent 'Pigeon' and 'Carry The Wet Wood', while some cleverly dispatched orchestration goes a long way on the closing title track.