Brown Recluse

Have you heard? There’s another new Belle & Sebastian record. As if Write About Love wasn’t enough, now there’s Eternal Tapestry and it’s some of their best stuff in years! I hate drawing blatant comparisons to other bands, but, really, this cannot be ignored. A listener in another room – who loves Belle & Sebastian – came running in. “Belle & Sebastian?!” No, sigh. But the Philly band, Brown Recluse, pulls off the B&S similarities in all the right ways. Singer Timothy Meskers has the same lithe, come-closer voice as Stuart Murdoch, and the band builds charming arrangements for drums, guitars, organs and horns, like the Glaswegians before them. “Wistful” is a word that gets tossed around a lot when talking about this kind of music. That would certainly apply to Brown Recluse and maybe add “winsome” as well. On “Impressions Of A Morning City,” in all of two minutes, Mesker paints a charming narrative of mundane city life. A woman “coaxes her son into the bath,” and Mesker observes, “Through the window I can hear him splash.” To capture the essence of B&S’s indie pop, you’ve got to have stunning songwriting, and the fact that Brown Recluse pulls it off with such staggering exactitude shows how frighteningly talented they are.

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