A Chorus Of Storytellers (Sub Pop)
This is the fifth full-length for San Diego ambient post-rockers the Album Leaf, and the first time leader Jimmy LeValle has allowed his live band to help him record. Unfortunately, it doesn’t go as well as his studio collaborations with Sigur Rós (see 2004’s In A Safe Place).
Admirable attempts are made to emulate tourmates Lymbyc Systym on Blank Pages, but they fall short of that band’s visceral energy and edge. The problems shift into songwriting on Falling From The Sun, a boring trudge centred around a go-nowhere chorus that’s lyrically vacuous. The moody Stand Still offers a glimmer of gloom-rock goodness until its core hook gets smothered by too many elements, including needless strings and drum samples.
Top track: Stand Still