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Boomkat Product Review:
Since his breakthrough album Dressed Up For The Letdown, Richard Swift has managed to earn himself a place among the great and the good of contemporary Americana, having toured with Wilco and found himself recording much of this album in their loft. Not only that, but the band's Pat Sansone lends bass to 'Ballad Of Old What's His Name', a song that also features the talents of Ryan Adams, Sean Lennon and - perhaps most bizarrely of all - Mark Ronson. It's easy to work out just why he's so highly regarded among his peers: Swift's not only a songwriter in the classic '70s mold, he's also got a real ear for detail when it comes to arrangement. His side-project under the name Instruments Of Science And Technology revealed a fascination with antique electronics, and vintage studio experiments, and this is carried through into his current song-based exploits. The jaunty honky-tonk of 'The Original Thought' is greatly bolstered by the presence of a seemingly out of place chubby synthesizer line that lumbers into the song from out of nowhere, and similarly, there's a space-echo dub undercurrent to the AOR slowjam 'Bat Coma Motown', bringing all kinds of vintage depth to the piece. Swift achieves a remarkable equilibrium between trad songwriting values and innovative (yet comparably old-fashioned) production experiments. Recommended.