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Album review: 'Unraveling'

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Maybird

"Unraveling"

30th Century Records/Columbia Records

maybirdmusic.com

Earlier this summer, Maybird released "Unraveling," a brisk, four-song EP produced by The Black Keys' Patrick Carney.  "Unraveling" further establishes the rock group's existing sound while bringing it to a wider audience via Danger Mouse's 30th Century Records. The layered, folk-psychedelic sheen on which Maybird has built its reputation is still palpable, but the band makes subtle stylistic tweaks that vary from song to song.

On the opening track, "To the Stars," amid mystical folk vibes, an enigmatic yet straightforward melody inhabits front man Josh Netsky's warm voice — which here resembles that of a more nasal Robin Pecknold of Fleet Foxes. At the heart of the EP is an understated, synth-infused aesthetic. During the song "Grace," dreamy keyboards lend a retro-1980's, Hall and Oates pop feel at moments, with Kurt Johnson's brilliant work on the pedal steel preventing a possible descent into kitsch.

Compared to the band's 2016 EP, "Turning Into Water," "Unraveling" has the band venturing more into the realm of atmospheric pop — resulting in the loss of some of the gravitas and edginess that has made Maybird so compelling in last few years.

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