Calexico

Carried to Dust (Quarterstick)

Phases & Stages

Calexico

Carried to Dust (Quarterstick)

For 10 years now, Calexico has branded its dusky, Southwestern balladry with mariachi horns and rhythms, weaving an intensely intricate array of styles into a familiar whole. The Tucson, Ariz., troupe's sixth proper LP ranks among its best, setting itself in line with 2003's exceptional Feast of Wire. Joey Burns' vocals remain hushed and subtly mesmerizing throughout, whispering with the calm force of Jim White on "Bend to the Road" and carrying a touch of Dire Straits in "Writer's Minor Holiday." Collaborations provide the album's backbone, especially Jairo Zavala's rugged Spanish verse on opening ode "Victor Jara's Hands" and Pieta Brown's delicate country duet "Slowness." Iron & Wine's Sam Beam returns to back the lilting flamenco of "House of Valparaiso." Carried to Dust feels like a precise parsing of Calexico's best elements, a lingering, understated beauty. (Calexico dusts up Antone's, Friday, Nov. 7.)

***.5

READ MORE
More Calexico
The Shepherd
The Shepherd
Hill Country patriarch Sam Beam spills some Iron & Wine

Dan Oko, Sept. 28, 2007

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
My Jerusalem
A Little Death (Record Review)

Jim Caligiuri, July 15, 2016

Texas Platters
The Echocentrics
Echo Hotel (Record Review)

Thomas Fawcett, June 24, 2016

More by Doug Freeman
Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
A look back at illustrated album covers old and new

July 29, 2016

Texas Platters
Jack Ingram
Midnight Motel (Record Review)

July 15, 2016

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Calexico

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)