The Austin Chronicle Guide to SXSW 2017

The Sour Notes

Do What May

Texas Platters

The Sour Notes

Do What May

Five LPs in five years with a few EPs mixed in between. No wonder Jared Boulanger, chief orchestrator behind the regularly remolding Sour Notes, has gotten the hang of a mixing board. Building on the stripped-down optimism of Last Looks in 2011, Do What May moves beyond aspiring wall of sound into pop symphony territory, layering strings ("In the Meanwhile"), full-bodied, multi-instrumental sequencings ("Do What May"), and well-placed guest vocals: Sabrina Ellis on the title track, Bailey Glover on "With Ease, With Time," and Sara Houser on "In the Meanwhile." What's more, there's a pace, and consideration for how tracks fit together, particularly through the midsection: "Two Hands Wait," "Cutthroat," and "In the Meanwhile." At certain junctures, like the hook on "Two Hands Wait," the frontman punches above his vocal weight class, but that's less prevalent now than in the past. On Do What May, Jared Boulanger's brought it all together.

***.5

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