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2008


Iron & Wine: Kiss Each Other Clean

Im Sommer 2008 muss es gewesen sein, als Iron & Wine das poolbar-Festival mit seinem Charme verzauberte. Die neue Platte des Singer-Songwriters Sam Beam, der sich hinter dem Namen verbirgt, heißt "Kiss Each Other Clean" und wird am 25. Jänner erscheinen. Spin hat sie sich angehört und vergibt Bestnoten:

More Wine Please: Mild-mannered folkie is besotted with splashier canvas

Iron and Wine's last album, 2007's The Shepherd's Dog, seemed to complete singer-guitarist Sam Beam's journey from spare, black-and-white acoustic sketch artist to full-color aural panoramist. But Kiss Each Other Clean explodes his palette even further. Just look at that cover art -- Beam rendered in neon-psychedelic lines, surrounded by peacocks -- it's advance visual notice of a sonic sea change.

And Kiss delivers plenty of unexpected layers, employed judiciously in service of Beam's usual ruminative ideas about good and evil, love and death: "Me and Lazarus" dribbles squeaky synths atop his increasingly sure voice before dropping in a tasteful sax. That sax gets decidedly more skronk on "Big Burned Hand," which rides a '70s groove into...a DJ scratching? From the guy who made his name whispering?

The wheat-colored troubadour hasn't disappeared completely, but even the acoustic-rooted tracks are flecked with new hues. "Half Moon" invites doo-wop ladies to liven up the background, while the lonesome "Godless Brother in Love" offers Beam's most expressive, engaging vocal performance yet, with a high cooing assist from Doveman's Thomas Bartlett. Then there are the beautifully detailed bookends -- delicately simmering, gospel-tinged "Walking Far From Home" and funky yet pensive epic "Your Fake Name Is Good Enough for Me." By opening and closing the album, they artfully combine Iron and Wine's past and present.

Rating 9 of 10
By Josh Modell (spin.com)

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