Carter Tanton – Freeclouds

January 01, 1970

(Western Vinyl)


Carter Tanton has a history with strong women. He’s played
guitar for Jana Hunter and Marissa Nadler and shared songwriting credits with
Nadler for “Puppet Master,” off her 2011 self-titled album. He’s recorded
before on his own account as Tulsa,
but this time puts his name and face up front, in one of the year’s best
psych-folk-rock recordings.


Freeclouds balances
strummy, acoustic campfire sensitivity (“In Knots) with sweeping, anthemic rock
(the fantastic “Murderous Joy”), a la sometime tour mates in the War on Drugs, tipping both styles into wild, mildly
psychotropic territories. Tanton’s voice, a real asset, runs cool and steady
over jangle-y tumults, a glow of reverb bringing out ghostly vibrato-trills. The
whole album feels ever so slightly out of sync with reality as we know it, in
the wavery guitar effects of trippy “Nylon,” the slow, late-Beatles swagger of
“Saturday” and the wall-of-guitars clamor of “Horrorscope,” as if Tanton had
access to other, more brightly colored realities.


Vetiver, Fruit Bats, Donkeys et al take note: Carter Tanton
has upped your game.


DOWNLOAD: “Murderous
Joy” “Horrorscope” JENNIFER KELLY

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