Palaxy Tracks

Record Review

Phases and Stages

Palaxy Tracks

Cedarland (Peek-a-Boo) Beneath the piano and cut-up drum tracks, creeps a low monotone: "A stranger in your own town; if everyone knew. ..." The voice is Brandon Durham, who shepherded his band Palaxy Tracks to Chicago in 2001, uncertain of his and their place in Austin. "... the real you." Oh, but we do. Those who soaked in the dewy screeches that radiated from the crummy PA at the Ritz Lounge know. So do those who bask in the warmth of their annual SXSW homecoming shows. Cedarland eliminates some of the starry electric effluvia of Palaxy Tracks' 2000 masterwork, The Long Wind Down, spotlighting Durham, whose sensitive, Nick Drake-like sentiments and delivery are the stuff of dorm-room mopefests and teenage-girl sob sessions. An overwhelming sense of place, physical and emotional, pervades Cedarland, which still packs an effects-happy punch in the right places. The cheeky title "To the Chicago Abyss" adds an extra layer to this rumination on love, time, and the meaning of home. Brad Murph's punchy riffs bounce off the well-timed electric wails of Durham, against a creamy backdrop of sculpted fuzztones that drop in and out of the mix. Ornate Pachelbel moments include opener "The Sediment," unquestionably ripe wedding material, and "The Awful Truth," an eight-minute mood-piece that breathes pastoral shoegaze. Cedarland expands Palaxy Tracks' palette, balancing emotional Anglophiliac romps ("The Wasp," "Girls on Bikes") with gentle, otherworldly interludes ("Good Morning Nurse," "Cedarland"). Palaxy Tracks' real home? Your stereo.


A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 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  

More Music Reviews
Review: Tearjerk, <i>Face to Face</i>
Review: Tearjerk, Face to Face
Face to Face (Record Review)

Kriss Conklin, May 12, 2023

Album Review: The Stacks
Album Review: The Stacks
Lay Me Down to Rest (Record Review)

Mars Salazar, Feb. 17, 2023

More by Michael Chamy
Texas Platters
Palaxy Tracks
Twelve Rooms (Record Review)

Sept. 16, 2005

Texas Platters
Feathers From the Wing EP (Record Review)

Aug. 12, 2005

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

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

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