A decade ago, when Dntel recorded "(This is) The Dream of Evan and Chan," his partnership with Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard may have been viewed as an oddity. Now that electronic and indie rock have become joined at the hip (with much assistance from Dntel and Gibbard's band, the Postal Service), it's easier to see the similarities between the two musicians. Aimlessness, the fourth LP from Dntel (aka Jimmy Tamborello), manages to produce that same warm, nostalgic dreamo that fuelled most of Gibbard's stuff. Moving away from the guest vocal crutch of his last LP, 2007's Dumb Luck, the Santa Barbarite has focused even more on textured, hazy compositions, allowing much of the album to move at an ebb-and-flow pace. Although tracks like "Jitters" and "Bright Night" rely on a crackling drum machine to guide the rhythms, nothing on Aimlessness moves beyond the sterile environment drafted by Tamborello's chosen electro-acoustics. From the relatively claustrophobic arrangement of "Retracer" to the dynamics deconstruction of anti-remix "Jitters (Geotic Mix)," Dntel doesn't allow ambiance to define Aimlessness as much as he uses it as a starting point, building from desert landscapes and ice sheets created by knobby, dusty synthesizers.
Read an interview with Dntel here. (Pampa)