Capsule Review: April (Sun Kill Moon)

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April 8, 2008

9:27 AM

Sun Kil Moon’s latest release, “April,” is a collection of delightfully homogeneous tracks, a fact that either enhances or instigates the intense depression conveyed by the album. Its 11 ballads are unquestionably beautiful, but there’s something in the way singer, songwriter, guitarist and all-around one-man wonder Mark Kozelek uses “April” to reflect solely on his losses and anguish that gives the album a distinctly masturbatory quality.

p. And Kozelek drags it out for miles.

p. This album is, in a word, long. Listeners may frequently wonder if they’re still listening to the same song eight minutes later.

p. There comes a time when a listener’s patience with melancholy folk music has been pushed to its breaking point; that time is about halfway through the album’s first track. “Lost Verses,” which is almost 10 minutes long, sets the pace for the rest of this lengthy release.

p. Despite these failings, the delicate, acoustic sound of “April” and the poetic, if more than a tad self-indulgent lyrics make a few of the songs worth a few listens. If you can manage to overcome your desire to fast-forward and find it possible to see through the uniformity of sound, high points of the album include “Moorestown,” “Lucky Man” and “Blue Orchids.”

p. I would give you some clue as to what these songs are all about, but honestly, if you just think “Kozelek’s depression,” you’ll be right on track.

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