Dead Texan The Dead Texan

Although a vaguely political name to the cynic, the Dead Texan is in fact one Adam Wiltzie of Stars of the Lid, and like them, this self-titled effort brings many gorgeous rewards for those with the time to invest in these mini-masterpieces. Taking a page from both contemporaries like Rachel’s and forbearers like Arvo Pärt and Erik Satie, Wiltzie infuses a lazy, lush sound, but also revels in the delights of specific repetition and the subsequent moods it brings. This is especially heard in highlight, "La Ballade d’Alain Georges,” which builds its droning, light strings and electro accoutrements around a simple pattern of piano chords. Crescendos and swells of sounds come from various sources, but in the middle is the calm, confident piano, a guide through Wiltzie’s musical mind, if you will. This light, bewitching touch also shows up on "Aegina Airlines” and "A Chronicle of Early Failures Part 2.” Eschewing length — the longest song is six minutes — in favour of intensity, some of these atmospheric beauties could use more time to fully bloom, but in their timeframe they leave more than their share of inspiration. In the end, it truly is a paradox that an artist named the Dead Texan would be able to breathe such life and emotion into, sometimes, a scant three minutes. (Kranky)