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Bunker Life

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Album Review

Backed by a full-time band for the first time since his days leading Portland indie rockers Sunset Valley, Herman Jolly's Bunker Life is the singer/songwriter's most immediately appealing solo release yet. Empathetically backed by bassist Grant Badger and drummer Rob Lloyd alongside occasional keyboard contributions by former bandmate Jeff Saltzmann, Jolly delivers ten songs ranging from the instant-classic indie rocker "1,000,000 Feet Below" to the more delicate ballad "Negative Blues." There's one comparative stinker, an awkward mash-up of Jolly's heartfelt and respectful version of Paul McCartney's "Yesterday" over a trip-hoppy drum and tambourine loop that's interesting to hear maybe once or twice. But when that misstep is immediately followed by the glorious "Glowing Wires," a reverie for overdubbed harmonies, acoustic guitar and twiddly keyboard lines worthy of any late-era XTC album, all is forgiven. Bunker Life shows that sometimes it's good for a bedroom auteur to step outside for a while.

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Bunker Life, Herman Jolly
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  • $9.90
  • Genres: Rock, Music
  • Released: Nov 07, 2006

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