Now It’s Overhead, Fall Back Open
Immaculately produced and yet entirely handcrafted
Andy LeMaster is an outsider in most aspects. The first non-Nebraskan signed to Saddle Creek, he basically lives in a Chase Park studio in Athens and hasn’t been heard from much since Now It’s Overhead’s last record in 2006. Yet his second LP, Fall Back Open, found him dead center within the artistic coordinates of Omaha — it’s where the raw confessionals of Bright Eyes commingled with The Faint’s politicization of nightclubbing under the awning of the nocturnal synth-pop of early Good Life. “Profile” lasciviously scanned Match.com over hard electro; “The Decision Made Itself” manifested LeMaster’s anxieties with forthright acoustic strumming; and the title track swooned and reverberated infinitely, all of it quintessentially Saddle Creek in sounding immaculately produced and yet entirely handcrafted. And thanks to the inclusion of “Antidote,” it’s also the best record Michael Stipe appeared on in the 21st century.