Alice Despard Group, Thinning Of The Veil

Alice Despard Group, Thinning Of The Veil

There are two songs that make the Alice Despard Group’s Thinning Of The Veil worth your attention and ten that more or less succeed only to the degree to which they remind you of the other two. The keepers are the hooky title track, which resonates like Barbara Manning in full indie-pop bloom, and “Zen Tantrum,” with its twisty Stereolabbish/Yo La Tengian indie rock guitar line, Flying Nun-like structure and extended middle section that’s not so much a solo as it is a vehicle for guitar exploration. The rest of the album is fitted out with low-key, jangly guitar pop that would have fit in almost perfectly on college radio during the latter half of the ’80s. Despard has a more delicate voice than she’s sometimes willing to acknowledge, and songs like “Widows Walk” and “Hold You Up” find her pushing it an inch past its capabilities. The results aren’t necessarily unappealing, but they do steamroll over the strengths that give Thinning Of The Veil a kick when Despard gets the chance.

(Arlingtone Records -- 299 Waverly Avenue, Brooklyn, NY. 11205;; Alice Despard Group --
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Review by . Review posted Wednesday, December 1st, 2004. Filed under Reviews.

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