eMusic Review 0
Lambchop has had to weather a number of absurd descriptions over the course of their 12-year existence. They've been branded alt-country, indie-jazz and — most famously and commonly — country-soul. None of these tags is accurate, but the fact that there are so many of them gets to a deeper issue with the band, one that arguably has a lot to do with their modest stature in the U.S. The trouble is that no one knows quite what to do with Lambchop, so they either concoct a series of ill-fitting genre tags or, worse, label them "unclassifiable," which makes them sound garrulous or willfully avant-garde.
Which is a shame, because Lambchop's music is beautiful, all thirteen of the group's members dissolving into one softly glowing whole. Never have so many sounded like so few. Each note is perfectly, deliberately placed, like a top layer on a house of cards or a brush stroke on a blank canvas. Starting with 1996's Thriller, their work has become increasingly gorgeous and intricate, culminating with 2004's two-part masterpiece Aw C'mon/No You C'mon. Damaged takes a step back from the grandeur of those records, opting instead for songs with plenty of open space.
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