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Joan of Arc So Much Staying Alive and Loneliness

With Joan of Arc's last album-The Gap, an experiment in ProTools released in 2000-songwriter Tim Kinsella's abstract minimalism and impenetrable lyrics seemed more to be creating rifts than bridging chasms between his current project and his fiery, atmospheric early work. But having kicked out the jams, and apparently the computers, to tour with Owls, Kinsella returns with an analog album that hems and haws but is still his most straightforward since Joan of Arc's debut, A Portable Model Of. So Much... is more serene than sinewy. Jettisoning digital detritus, Kinsella's post-post-rock favors chord-shifts over tone drifts, as delicately intertwined melodies replace tape-work in a move that emphasizes getting on track over distressed multitracks. While Kinsella's wheels may spin more than tracks speeds, he reels in the ramblings, in and offers warmly hued and pastoral settings. For fans of the plaintive Gastr Del Sol school, So Much Staying Alive and Loneliness will provide welcome companionship.

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