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Boomkat Product Review:
‘The Errant Charm’ is Vetiver’s fifth album, and here we find bandleader Andy Cabic dipping his toes ever further into the pool of perfectionism. Apparently while writing the record he took pre-mixes and sketches around with him on the iPod, and proceeded to wander around San Francisco (no doubt with Burrito in hand) making changes to the lyrics or the arrangements. I’m not usually one for overworking music, but you really can’t hear it – ‘The Errant Charm’ is Vetiver’s freshest sounding set of compositions to date, and with precise but retro production to match, you should know you’re in for something good. The band has now dropped any connection they may have had to the short-lived Yank folk scene (New Weird America anybody? I thought not) and we find Cabic in an assured position writing pop songs that could have come from any time between 1985 and 1986. Jangling, reverb-drenched guitars, heavily processed drums and the kind of analog monosynth funkiness that died when white people discovered electronic music punctuate the songs with a new found drive. There are still plenty of nods to Simon and Garfunkel, but like Justin Vernon’s new Bon Iver full-length, there’s a sense the Cabic wants to do something different, and he’s looking to soft rock to do it. At times I’m reminded of the more upbeat moments of the Kings of Convenience catalogue (possibly even stretching into The Whitest Boy Alive?) and that’s no bad thing at all. Highly recommended, and just the kind of balmy shimmering pop we need as the summer continues to threaten to show up.