M3 in CMJ

Written by Jeff Keibel on Mon, 21 Aug 2000 03:25:05 -0400.

Same issue, a review for the new Mojave 3 album which finally gets released in the USA on September 5th.

Mojave 3 is a country band in more than one sense of the word, having merged the American musical idiom top the traditional styles of the English countryside. Songwriter Neil Halstead, a former member of Slowdive, has turned from the guitar-drenched instrumental intensity of that band to the more subtle art of the song. Sharing a passing friendship with Dylan-esque folk and slowcore, the songs on "Excuses For Travellers" go in a different direction than most reverential alt-country. Album opener "In Love With A View" employs the sparsest of piano pedal steel guitar to invest the lyrical details of the aching love song with a sonically sympathetic environment. As the narrator moves from his casual acceptance of a woman's beauty to his eventual emotional subjugation to her presence, so does the music expand to create an obsessional atmosphere with electric-guitar passages that swell in imitation of the passion that is skidding out of the narrator's control. Delicate acoustic guitar and banjo color "My Life In Art", a valentine to a stripper with big dreams and little possibility of achieving them. "Excuses For Travellers" is an album that takes it easy - but give it time to sink in and it will reward you with a slow burning ardor. - Lois Maffeo

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