Autumn Defense – Once Around

January 01, 1970

(Yep Roc)


After four albums, Wilco’s John Stirratt and Patrick Sansone
have turned their side project, the lush Autumn Defense, into a full time
enterprise that boasts its own distinctive sound and a fiercely devoted
following. A sunny slice of retro-hewn paisley pop, their latest joint
endeavor, Once Around, finds the duo
continuing to hew their agreeable day-glo sound and imbuing it with the mellow
caress that’s quickly become their standard stock in trade.


Unlike the constantly shifting ambitions that steer their
guise in their day job, the Autumn Defense makes no attempt to defy pop
parameters or offer up any grand revelations. Acoustic guitars and gilded
harmonies are their tools of choice, and on songs like “Back of My Mind,”
“Allow Me” and “Huntington Fair,” they create a lilting pastiche that bands
like Bread, America and the Hollies once
relayed in their heyday.  At best, the
band manages to attain only minimum momentum – the precious “The Swallows of
London Town” offers a persistent strum, while “Don’t Know” comes closest to
suggesting any hint of a pessimistic perspective – but it’s the music’s supple,
wistful caress that’s fully mined to the max. The perfect soundtrack for a
picnic in the park, Once Around is an
agreeable effort that provides an effusive aural encounter.


of My Mind,” “The Swallows of London



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