In dreams is where Horse + Donkey does its best work, from the surrealist-tinged art themes of the local trio's albums to the phantasmal sheen of its live punk specters. On the group's second release this year, that sleepwalking vibe becomes crystallized in a few moments of clarity. A handful of tracks get remodeled and renamed from their eponymous spring debut, including a slooooowed-down version of "Dead Dog" that now has an almost psychotropic effect, but the newer compositions are the real meat. Prismatic opener "Tutu," the whirring "Night," and frantic guitar scrabble "Eagle" show H+D digging out its talent for propulsive kinesis, guitar and bass fighting for dominance in the New Wave tussle. Singer/guitarist Jaime Zuverza's vocals have become clearer, less muffled by reverb, though the lyrical content remains somewhat mysterious ("In a dream with no clothes and no shoes and no drink"). The band's on an extended hiatus, but Dreams is a memorable marker of how far up the mountain it has ambled.
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