Sun Kil Moon – Admiral Fell Promises

January 01, 1970



(Caldo Verde)


Anyone who’s had even the most casual encounter with the
work of Mark Kozelek will immediately know what to expect from the latest
effort bannered under his nom de plume, Sun Kil Moon. While Kozelek has veered
from his lo-fi pastiche in the past – he famously produced a tribute album to
John Denver and some wholly unexpected covers of early AC/DC songs graced an
early solo outing — most of his music advances the hushed, haunting, twilight
musings that have been in stock in trade since his initial efforts with his
previous band, the Red House Painters. As a result, it’s tempting to dismiss
his albums as mere extensions of the same – collections of weary, heavy-lidded
balladry that require no heavy lifting from either the artist or his audience.


Still, there are echoes of luminous beauty lingering just
below the surface, and while Kozelek pares down the proceedings even more than before
– relying solely on his hushed vocals and only an acoustic guitar – the pensive
tones of Nick Drake and early CSNY maintain that egocentric view. Happily then,
those lulled by these mellow musings will find a certain sobering beauty in
songs like “Sam Wong Hotel,” “Third and Seneca” and the title track,” due
entirely to Kozelek’s knack for wistful, wide-eyed reflection.


That said, it’s hard to rouse any more than a modicum of
amount of enthusiasm for the rest of these sleepy sojourns. More Sun than Moon,
Admiral Fell Promises may be best
described as an effective antidote for insomnia


Wong Hotel,” “Third and Seneca,” “Admiral Fell Promises” LEE ZIMMERMAN

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