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Chessie Manifest

  • Words: Tony Ware
  • Label: Plug Research
  • XLR8R Rating: 7/10

Chessie’s Manifest is a survey of introspective junctions (forgive any train metaphors). The electroacoustic duo’s organic offerings such as “Long Bridge,” “Magnolia Cutoff,” and “Alphabet Route” could be turn-of-the-millennia Thrill Jockey post-rock, or bumpers for breezy agricultural commercials. Other tracks, meanwhile, nod to more dissociative Krautrock and electro-dub. “Intercity,” however, is incandescent pop, while the album’s undoubted peak elevation is “High Time.” With vintage Casio tones and resonant baritone circa The Cure’s “Close to Me,” “High Time” is part ’80s, made futuristic by the asymmetric kicks and steam-valve accompaniment.

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