All Smiles – Oh For The Getting and Not Letting Go

January 01, 1970



Jim Fairchild’s latest solo release under his All Smiles
moniker unabashedly displays his musical pedigree. Fairchild has played in
Grandaddy, Earlimart, and most recently, Modest Mouse. Though skronky, Isaac
Brock guitar squeals are largely absent from this new record, the lazy, hazy
central California
pop-rock of Fairchild’s former bands permeates his songwriting. Elliott Smith
is clearly another big reference point here, but Fairchild’s hushed vocals and
borderline-folk style pales in comparison to Smith’s tired and wasted emotions.


Everything about All Smiles is even-paced, often
excruciatingly so. The tempos, the singing, the medium doses of distorted
guitars that pop up every now and then, the subtle guitar licks that emblazon
strummed chords – it all chugs along at a pleasant but yawning 30 mph. It’s not
that Fairchild needs a gimmick to enliven his music. It’s just that this style
of contemporary mope-rock has been done many times before, with much more


 Standout Tracks: “Maps To The Homes of Former Foes,” “Brother I


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