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Tindersticks (Second Album)

Tindersticks

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Album Review

Tindersticks' second consecutive, eponymously titled double-LP set refines the approach of their debut; while every bit as ambitious and adventuresome, it achieves an even greater musical balance, stretching into luxuriously long compositional structures and more intricate arrangements. While Stuart Staples' songs remain as obsessive and haunted as before, he wards off his demons with fits of pitch-black humor (the narrative "My Sister") and a more tender perspective; similarly, while his funereal vocals remain the focus, there's a new reliance on extended instrumental passages, and even a pair of duets (the centerpiece, "Travelling Light" — a gorgeous collaboration with the Walkabouts' Carla Torgerson — is akin to a Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra record trapped in emotional purgatory). Another awesome triumph of mood and atmosphere.

Biography

Formed: 1992 in Nottingham, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Tindersticks were one of the most original and distinctive British acts of the '90s, standing apart from both the British indie scene and the rash of Brit-pop guitar combos that dominated the U.K. charts. Where their contemporaries were often direct and to the point, Tindersticks were obtuse and leisurely, crafting dense, difficult songs layered with literary lyrics, intertwining melodies, mumbling vocals, and gently melancholy orchestrations. Essentially, the group filtered the dark romanticism...
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Tindersticks (Second Album), Tindersticks
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