Bevel Where Leaves Block The Sun

I never understood why the band Drunk wasn’t more universally acclaimed. I think it has something to do with the fact that the people fortunate enough to discover them just aren’t willing to share them with anyone else, they want them to be their own little secret. That theory also applies to all Drunk side projects too, so it doesn’t really matter that Where The Leaves Block The Sun is Bevel’s second album because nobody knows. Bevel is the name that Drunk’s Via Nuon records under, and while the two bands do share a certain amount of musical similarities, Bevel’s work tends to be more sparse and folkie. In saying that, though, Nuon has assembled an impressive list of friends to help out with this particular record (including members of Dirty Three and Lambchop) and flesh out songs when required. When that fleshing out does occur it is usually accompanied by slow, smouldering build-ups that never reaches a thundering climax, which is a good thing. Nuon’s voice might be an acquired taste for some people, as the press release describes it as Nick Drake with a light Cambodian accent, so that’s what to expect. Much of the music is mournful and melancholy, but with a fragile beauty that stops the darker mood from being overwhelming. However, you do have to be in a certain mood to appreciate it fully; late nights and solitude are probably a good starting point, although these things are always open to negotiation. Leaves Block The Sun is a beautiful album that will appeal to fans of Bonnie Prince Billy, Nick Drake and that ilk. And if you do like it, maybe you should actually tell someone else about it. (Jagjaguwar)