Craig Ross

Dead Spy Report (MCA)

There are two possible results that can occur when a single artist performs most or all of the work on an album; either the thing is a muddy, self-indulgent mess or the triumph of a singular vision shining through. Thankfully, Dead Spy Report is an example of the latter. The disc was recorded largely by Ross at his home studio, with well-chosen guest appearances by a few kindred spirits like Brian Beattie, John Hagen (I'm hearing that cello everywhere nowadays) and Lisa Germano, but for the most part what you hear is all Ross. Imagine a young, unjaded Lindsey Buckingham and you get a pretty clear idea of what this album sounds like, as the two share both an almost uncanny pop sense and a penchant for using odd, whispery vocals and evocative percussion. MCA is touting the songs on this record as "mildly hallucinogenic," and for once, I think I'll have to agree with them.
4 stars -- Ken Lieck

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle