Brokeback Brokeback and the Black Rock

BrokebackBrokeback and the Black Rock
After a decade, Brokeback break their silence. Led by Tortoise's Douglas McCombs, the Brokeback family expands on Black Rock. Once a solo project for McCombs, he decided to pull in Noel Kupersmith for 2003's Look at the Bird. This time around, McCombs has something of a full-fledged band, after bringing in three musicians (Pete Croke, James Elkington, Chris Hansen) to create this new eight-track record. It's almost as if McCombs wanted a clean slate to work from — a new backdrop to create something different — and if that's true he's succeeded, to some degree, at least. "Don't Worry Pigeon" and "The Wire, The Rag, and The Payoff" represent two of the warmer tracks you'll find in their catalogue. But that isn't saying too much considering Brokeback's past of gloomy, dark instrumentals. While warm in comparison, Black Rock is still filled with McCombs' spacious, isolating tracks ("Tonight at Ten," "Gold!"), which are best for lonely winter evenings. (Thrill Jockey)