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Kepler | Attic Salt (Resonant)
This is the third album for Canadian songsmiths Kepler. Other members have shuffled in and out, but Jon Georgekishwatt and Samir Khan remain staples in the band. It's hard to pinpoint one particular influence that they carry through 'Attic Salt': there is a lot of sadcore and a couple of twangy rock jams. The vocals are scratchy and breathy. A few of these songs would feel right at home on a David Gordon Green film soundtrack. This is the kind of stuff I usually live for, but for some reason I just don't feel it.
The last song on the album, Reward and Respite, is the only one to make a lasting impression. It's the only song where the lyrics hit home: "I will make myself a mouth to speak in every single tongue; to pray to every god just in case." The music on the rest of the album is high calibre, but I just can't get into the lyrics. In Days of Begging, they are almost intolerable: "and now I carry a knife or a screwdriver, 'cause I never know when I'll have to stick a motherfucker." Screwdriver, motherfucker, OK they both end in "-er", but that doesn't mean you should try and make them rhyme. It just feels that Kepler are trying too hard. Personally, I think I would have enjoyed 'Attic Salt' ten times more if it had been an instrumental album.

Leigh Kelsey
April 2006