Monday, June 7, 2010

Album Review: Pearly Gate Music -- Self-Titled

   On stage, Zach Tillman stomps and howls in a blood-boiling frenzy of raucous spirit. Off stage, he is jovial, gregarious and ultimately charming. On record, Zach shows himself as something in between, yet definitively different, from his other selves.

    Pearly Gate Music’s self-titled debut presents the melancholic cries of Zach’s ethereal-folk, with the ability to shift from whispered drums and guitarless, chanting harmonies to sweat-drenched, clap-along rock n’ roll, complete with distorted, madhouse solos and (inevitably) the stomping toes of everyone within earshot.

   The album is lush, a richness that is only furthered by Zach’s heartbroken poetics, something that hasn’t received as much attention, but which deserves as much praise as the sound itself. He is a poet rooted in the spirit of electric-Dylan, but with a modern twist of broken, trailing cadence that drifts in and out of time.

   The album pulls you in deeper with every rotation, allowing you to catch the almost unnoticed nuances that you had unknowingly smiled towards last time, eventually realizing why a seemingly-sad song left you grinning and dancing about. Pearly Gate Music is, in one reporter’s humble opinion, one of the best debut albums in recent years, something to be cherished among the ever-cluttered shelf of modern music.

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