Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Out there on the Maroon

Play it: The Minus 5 - S/T (AKA The Gun Album)

The Minus 5, for the uninitiated, is a Scott McCaughey-led collective that features a stellar lineup of 'indie' superstars. Half the enjoyment, sometimes, is just seeing who in the heck is playing on it. This may be the first album where that is not so... not because there's not a great lineup (stellar,) but instead because the album is so durn enjoyable in and of itself.

Already being referred to as The Gun Album, this self-titled release thematically revolves around loss, death, and a gun... yet it's quite sunny and agreeable in it's sound and feel. McCaughey has always been a pop officianado (feet planted in the 60's,) and he's never been sharper or more consistent with his songwriting and references. And even the line-up may be more interesting this time around.

Besides Young Fresh Fellows leader (and REM tourmate) Scott McCaughey, there's Peter Buck (REM,) Bill Rieflin (Ministry, Swans, Peter Murphy;) John Ramberg (Stumpy Joe, Model Rockets;) dudes from Wilco (Jeff Tweedy, John Stirratt, Glenn Kotche, Mike Jorgensen;) Colin Meloy (The Decemberists,) John Wesley Harding, Kelly Hogan, Morgan Fisher (Mott the Hoople,) Sean Nelson (Harvey Danger,) Ken Stringfellow (The Posies,) and 3/4 of The Dharma Bums (Eric Lovre, John Moen and Jim Talstra - who both also now play in The Maroons) Whew!

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