Alpha Rev

Bloom (Kirtland)

Texas Platters

Alpha Rev

Bloom (Kirtland)

Unplugged from corporate resources after a sojourn with the majors, Casey McPherson keeps his vision of widescreen Americana intact on Alpha Rev's third album Bloom. Sounding as if they were recorded on a Hollywood soundstage, "Highways" and the Civil War-themed "Lexington" manage the difficult trick of sounding lush and spare at the same time, evoking the wide vistas and dawn-kissed horizons in McPherson's imagination. "I Will Come" and "Lonely Man" evince just enough smoky brood to give the tracks some genuine menace, with characters smoldering on the edge of a nervous breakdown. McPherson gives the vocal performance of his life, tightly controlled no matter the mood and ignoring any chance he's given to climb over the top. Oddly, Bloom falters on sensitive ballad "When You Gonna Run" and cheerleading pop tune "Sing Loud," which wallow in the kind of cliches that earn triple-A radio play but fade in daylight. Alpha Rev purrs most convincingly with a contemplative frown rather than a comforting smile.

***

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  

READ MORE
More Alpha Rev
Texas Platters
Alpha Rev
New Morning (Record Review)

Austin Powell, April 30, 2010

Off the Record
Off the Record
Music News

Austin Powell, Sept. 12, 2008

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
... And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead
X: The Godless Void and Other Stories (Record Review)

Alejandra Ramirez, Feb. 21, 2020

Texas Platters
Daniel Johnston
Chicago 2017 (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Feb. 21, 2020

More by Michael Toland
Local Music to Livestream, Download, and Otherwise Enjoy Digitally
Local Music to Livestream, Download, and Otherwise Enjoy Digitally
What we’re watching and listening to

March 20, 2020

Andrew Cyrille Lays His <i>Declaration of Musical Independence</i> on UT
Andrew Cyrille Lays His Declaration of Musical Independence on UT
Rarified improv comes to campus

Jan. 16, 2020

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Alpha Rev

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
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

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

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