Shipping News Three-Four

Shipping News Three-Four
The Shipping News have pulled something off that few bands could ever dream of. As a way to break up the monotony of playing with the same group for nearly a decade, the band released a trio of EPs over the course of last year, each showcasing one song from every different member of the band. These EPs have now been collected on one disc, including three new contributions not available through the original series. The members were expected to play all the instruments they needed for their songs (though somehow Chris Higdon of Elliot and a few of the Rachel's crew manage to contribute) and many of the tracks were recorded almost immediately after they were written. With an experiment like this, one would tend to expect more dangerous outcomes, but Three-Four is as great a record as anything the Shipping News has produced before. All three members offer up some of their best songwriting to date, with at least one classic Shipping News song coming from every player. Unexpectedly consistent, hauntingly dark and all-together well-crafted, the Shipping News have set the precedent with this one, making out-of-the-box thinking look easy. (Quarterstick)