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Alternative & Indie - Released April 15, 2016 | Dead Oceans

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
On his first two albums, Kevin Morby made a name for himself as a singer/songwriter with a finely burnished voice, sensitively wrought lyrics, and a good ear for arrangements. On his third album, and first for Dead Oceans, Morby worked with producer Sam Cohen (of Yellowbirds) to expand his sound a little, while still staying true to the honest approach he'd almost perfected already. The duo surround Morby's trenchant songs with a rich tapestry of sound, adding keyboards, electronic squiggles, mariachi horns, backing vocals, and even singing saws to the mix. They actually met while playing in a Band tribute band and the influence certainly comes through in the various forms of Americana they cycle through on the album. The full-to-the-breaking-point arrangements of some of the songs, like "I Have Been to the Mountain" and "Dorothy" (both of which feature some first-rate fuzz bass work by Cohen), definitely capture the rollicking, jolly feel of the Band they exuded at their best. The keen eye given to sound throughout helps the quieter tracks too, with the buzzing keyboards and blown-out guitar tones of the title track giving the hushed ballad an expansive range, which is held down solidly by Morby's strong vocals. He's the rock-solid center of all the songs, whether they're fully arranged or sparsely decorated. His lyrics don't tell stories as much as they capture moments or explore small feelings, something the elegiac, expansive arrangements really help bring to life. While Morby's last two records were good (sometimes even great), working with Cohen turned out to be a very wise decision that added an extra dimension to his work. The match of songs and sounds on Singing Saw delivers on all the promise of his earlier records, while firmly establishing Morby as one of the best singer/songwriters going. ~ Tim Sendra
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Alternative & Indie - Released April 26, 2019 | Dead Oceans

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Fashions pass, God stays. Whatever we think of the man, he's still there, even where we don't expect it. Just like on Kevin Morby's fifth solo recording. The concept-album of this great American indie rock guru is neither a soundtrack for devout church-goers, nor an exalted symphony blind to the glory of the great bearded man sitting up there on his cloud... Former bass player of the band Woods and singer of The Babies, Morby takes the word of God by the collar and takes it a little bit everywhere. It is both the God of gospel as well as the God of oh my god. The album has a lot of gospel to offer. It quickly becomes chamber rock that slips into poisonous Lou Reed style rock (Velvet era), preacher-ish like Bob Dylan or disillusioned like Leonard Cohen, three of the iconic craftsmen. The instrumentation follows the forms of the minute and the songwriter unveils the flute, the saxophone and Wurlitzer if necessary. The fourteen songs of Oh My God are especially tight because of their lavish form and the sequences always being well thought-out. As always with Kevin Morby, the classicism of his music does not match the speed of time. For this, you just have to take it in, to follow him in his inner wanderings. Believer, agnostic or atheist, just close your eyes and let yourself be rocked by the unique style of this unique modern rock band. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 16, 2017 | Dead Oceans

Intended as a sort of companion piece to 2016's Singing Saw, City Music sees singer/songwriter Kevin Morby playing yin to the former's yang, trading comely pastoral tones for cool urban clamor. Much like Bob Dylan (an acknowledged and apparent influence), Morby is a native of the Midwest who began his career in New York, first as a member of bands like the Babies and Woods, then recast as an indie poet bard with a warm affinity for the city. Before decamping to Los Angeles, he released 2013's Harlem River, a folky Greenwich Village-indebted postcard to the city of his musical awakening. After a pair of records exploring his gentler West Coast side, Morby returns here to his New York muse, this time evoking some of the raw thrills of the CBGB crowd paired with a contemporary indie spirit all his own. Notably darker from the outset, he opens with the brooding rain-slick ballad "Come to Me Now," whose lush organ, distorted drums, and eerie whistle sample are as lonesome as the song's lyrics. Echoes of the Ramones and especially Jim Carroll -- whose "People Who Died" is referenced within -- can be heard in the rousing "1234," while Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground seem to lurk around every corner, from the gritty midtempo thump of "Aboard My Train" to the sleepy "Dry Your Eyes." In a brief spoken word interlude reciting from a Flannery O'Connor piece, fellow singer/songwriter Meg Baird sets up the album's title track in which twin guitars snake around in enchanting harmony like Television on morphine. As with his debut, City Music feels very much like a postcard to New York, though this time Morby arrives with some accumulated miles to help support his wizened tone. ~ Timothy Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released February 28, 2019 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 27, 2016 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released March 28, 2019 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 25, 2017 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released September 7, 2016 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released February 9, 2016 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 5, 2014 | Suicide Squeeze Records

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Alternative & Indie - Released April 18, 2019 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released September 4, 2015 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released March 25, 2016 | Dead Oceans

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 12, 2015 | Dead Oceans