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Runner (Bonus Track Version)

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iTunes Review

With their 10th full-length, Runner, The Sea and Cake remain one of the more durable and consistently inventive post-rock bands. Over 18 years, the Chicago-based group has honed a distinctive sound while still exploring new directions, as evidenced by their excellent 2011 EP The Moonlight Butterfly. In many ways, this sounds like a companion piece to that release. Commanding without being flashy, this talented quartet handles intricate arrangements with skill and a laid-back rhythmic drive. The songs are varied and finely crafted, and there are some great ones on Runner. “Harps” and “The Invitations” ride gurgling, propulsive synthesizers rich with texture. “On and On” and “Skyscraper” feature colorful, jazz-influenced guitar hooks and the crisp drumming of John McEntire (who also plays with Tortoise), as Sam Prekop’s warm and drowsy vocals follow fluid melodies that ebb and flow. The soft acoustic guitar ballad “Harbor Bridges” is as unexpected as it is serene and captivating. This is an atmospheric and elegant release that ranks among The Sea and Cake's best.

Customer Reviews

What a great album!

When you think the cake may turn stale, just a subtle change in sound seems like a giant step forward, one of there best works!

Brilliant Sounds from Chi Town

This Chicago quartet is nothing but amazing. Solid work, some of their best and easiest in quite some time.

Drifting away on a wave of sound.

The Sea and Cake treat us yet again to their brilliantly layered music that has continually built off of, what I feel created their signature sound, their 1997 album The Fawn. Unlike the iTunes reviewer, I rather believe that the guitar work is indeed in the thick of it, and to say that there's more space being explored here is somewhat short sighting their entire body of work, which has always tapped into experimental spatial composition (some songs more so than on this album!). You always know when you are hearing a The Sea and Cake tune, but I think it's fantastic that after all of these years, they always find a way to keep things fresh and diverge just enough to keep things wonderfully interesting. Great stuff!


Formed: 1993 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Alternative

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

The Sea and Cake are a post-rock supergroup of sorts, comprised of luminaries from the Chicago independent scene. The band is led by singer/guitarist Sam Prekop, who, along with bassist Eric Claridge, was an alumnus of the frequently brilliant Shrimp Boat. After that group's dissolution, Prekop and Claridge were offered the opportunity to embark on a new project and hastily recruited ex-Coctails guitarist Archer Prewitt and Tortoise drummer John McEntire before entering the studio. Originally intended...
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