Great Lake Swimmers albums have always been subtly
entrancing affairs, not likely to wow on the first listen but guaranteed to
insert themselves into the soundtrack of your life if you give them a chance.
With Lost Channels, though, singer
Tony Dekker and a larger-than-usual ensemble of players have created an album
with far more immediate appeal than previous outings.
Dekker’s high tenor, more often than not helped by plenty of
reverb, is an undeniably affecting instrument, but as well-suited as it is to
the ethereal compositions that have been his bailiwick, it’s not powerful
enough to give more melody-driven songs like “Palmistry” and
“She Comes to Me in Dreams” the punch they deserve. The ballads,
especially “Everything is Moving So Fast” and “Concrete
Heart,” are as haunting as ever, but on the whole, Lost Channels has precisely the opposite effect we’ve come to
expect from Great Lake Swimmers. It’s pleasant enough on first listen, but
doesn’t give much reason to return.
Standout Tracks: “Everything
is Moving So Fast,” “Concrete Heart” ERIC SCHUMACHER-RASMUSSEN