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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 19 mars 2019 | Slumberland Records

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 5 mai 2014 | Memphis Industries

One of the main pleasures of listening to a Papercuts album is the care and feeding the band's chief architect, Jason Quever, puts into the arrangements. His skills at layering sounds and creating dreamily soft atmospheres have not only made his own albums a candy-tasting treat, but also led to him being an in-demand producer. Papercuts' most recent album before this, 2011's Fading Parade, was the group's masterpiece. The aching beauty of the melodies, the shimmering baroque pop feel, and the emotion Quever invested in the songs all came together to create something magical. It would be nice to say 2014's Life Among the Savages continued the trend and built upon the production; instead, Quever pulls back and aims for something more intimate and a little less arranged. That's not to say the album is stark or under-produced, only that there is more space between the instruments and there are moments of quiet calm that put the focus squarely on Quever's vocals. It's a move that could be seen as a disappointment for people who love big, orchestrated albums, but there's a heartfelt honesty to much of Life that is refreshing and the album has just as much emotional impact as anything Papercuts have done. Maybe even more, as Quever's voice and words convey some real pain that's rarely obscured by the music, as it may have been in the past. The slowly unwinding piano ballad "Easter Morning" is probably the best example of this, with Quever sounding fragile and lost as he gently plays the keys. To go along with the unvarnished sadness and midtempo melancholy, there are a few songs that sparkle a little and give the album some balance, like the sweetly jangling "Family Portrait" and the insistent, cello-led "Afterlife Blues." Mostly though, the album is a beautiful downer. It shows that Quever isn't just a sonic magician who can craft pillow-soft dream pop and ornate indie pop; he can also make music that has true intimacy and emotion running through it like an electrical current. Life Among the Savages isn't the easiest Papercuts album to love, but over repeated listens the mood the restrained sound creates and the subtle emotion the songs convey are more than enough to win over anyone who decides to stick with it. © Tim Sendra /TiVo
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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 19 octobre 2018 | Slumberland Records

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 13 février 2007 | Gnomonsong

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 19 octobre 2004 | Antenna Farm Records

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 11 mai 2009 | Memphis Industries

Papercuts make the kind of albums that are easy to ignore or write off as simple and unchallenging indie pop. The smooth textures and gentle surfaces of the production, the breezy melodies of the songs, and the quiet sweetness of Jason Quever's vocals and lyrics don't overwhelm or stand up and demand attention; instead they kind of seep into the pleasure center of your brain if you want them to. The two albums previous to You Can Have What You Want were bright and sunny, but very calm and almost serene. This record isn't much different -- maybe a little more layered and gauzy at times, but still overflowing with pleasant melodies and nice sounds. Quever as always sings the lyrics as if in a dream, drifting over the rich arrangements with a light and feathery touch that brings to mind a collegiate and slightly shaky Colin Blunstone (or a less shaky early Neil Young.) He doesn't bowl you over with emotion but he conveys great feeling in his limited range, and on some of the songs, he comes close to breaking hearts with his boyish sincerity. Other times, he captures the ominous spookiness of the lyrics perfectly with his hushed and near conversational singing. Indeed the album seems to be a concept album about a possibly post-apocalyptic world full of suffering and weirdness, which is quite different from the previous album's subject matter. Quever keeps things pretty obscure and hinted at; he's not beating you over the head with any great statements. Again, he's letting the message sneak into your brain quietly and wrapping it in lovely arrangements that would sound good no matter what he was singing about. In that regard, Papercuts are very much like fellow low-key weirdos Grandaddy and Midlake. You Can Have What You Want falls a little short of the last record, Can't Go Back, just because it isn't as jaunty or light-hearted, but it is still an impressive work that should go a ways in providing some proof that the band has more depth and power than one might have thought if they just stuck to the surface. © Tim Sendra /TiVo
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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 18 septembre 2018 | Slumberland Records

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 11 février 2011 | SUB POP

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 1 janvier 2009 | Memphis Industries

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 16 août 2018 | Slumberland Records

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 14 mars 2011 | SUB POP

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Alternatif et Indé - Paru le 10 octobre 2018 | Slumberland Records