City Of Refuge (Asthmatic Kitty)

Rating: NNNN

Raymond Raposa has spent the last six years making folksy Americana that’s as creepy as hell. City Of Refuge’s 15 tracks are uneven in both length and musical depth – one track, High Plain 3, is just a minute and 31 seconds of quiet, droning ambient static – yet the record plays out like the cohesive score to a postmodern, post-apocalyptic western.

The influence of traditional American standards is most evident on I’ll Fly Away, which adds a creative (and ironic) twist to the tune of the Battle Hymn Of The Republic. If you’re looking for a record with clear standout singles, this isn’t it. City’s strength lies in its ability to orient and disorient the listener – to paint rich, spooky images and then strike the set for the next scene.

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