Album Reviews

J Mascis – Elastic Days – Album Review

J Mascis – Elastic Days – Album Review by Killian Laher

Guitar god J Mascis seems to be alternating Dinosaur Jr albums with solo ones these days.  His fifth solo album is a little like all the previous ones, that is, a little like Dinosaur Jr, without the guitar fuzz and with the noise turned down just a bit.  This one feels quite summery, opening with clean guitar licks on See You At The Movies.  Far from being Dino-unplugged, it comes across like one of the mellower tracks on any Dinosaur Jr album.  Although Mascis’ guitar work is mostly kept in check, the song features a soaring guitar solo.

The slower pace delivers mixed results.  Web So Dense and I Want Dust are slow ballads with piano, which are pleasant enough, but drag a bit in comparison to the spritelier ones.  Like many others, Web So Dense is rescued by Mascis’ terrific guitar solo.

Elsewhere, Sky Is All We Had has introspective guitar picking and Picking Out The Seeds is an almost Stones-y strum.  A lot of these songs use the same building blocks, opening with strummed acoustic before being joined by full band.  So a lot of the time it’s a case of waiting for Mascis’ extraordinary guitar solos.  Give It Off and Drop Me have solos that can only be described as ripping.  At times (Everything She Said) he comes very close indeed to Dinosaur Jr territory, perhaps these were held over from a previous album?

The premise for the album is a bit strange, it’s neither acoustic nor full blown Dinosaur Jr.  Mascis’ cracked vocals are a bit more prominent which is a mixed blessing.  But these are minor complaints.  What we have is a downright enjoyable album, full of wistful, strummy rock.

Track List –
1. See You At The Movies
2. Web So Dense
3. I Went Dust
4. Sky Is All We Had
5. Picking Out The Seeds
6. Give It Off
7. Drop Me
8. Cut Stranger
9. Elastic Days
10. Sometimes
11. Wanted You Around
12. Everything She Said

See You At The Movies 

 

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Categories: Album Reviews, Header, Music

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