Crushed Stars Gossamer Days

The aptly named Crushed Stars are the indie pop project of Dallas native Todd Gautreau and in the past, his music has been very, very quiet. While the ten songs on Gossamer Days could hardly be described as such, they do possess a richness that he had only hinted at previously. That might be in part thanks to the production of Stuart Sikes, who also worked with Cat Power on The Greatest, but it is also reflected in Gautreau’s songs, which mange to carefully walk the line between bleak and beautiful. There are hints of Red House Painters and the Clientele, but they are closest in spirit to nearly forgotten Sarah Records band Brighter, who also produced this kind of wonderful melancholy. When it comes to quiet indie pop, Gossamer Days is pretty much as good as it gets. The only foot he puts wrong is with the instrumental "Snow Day,” which meanders around for five minutes, never finding a destination. It feels like a wasted opportunity when the rest of the album is just so damned lovely. (Simulacra)