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flag US - Texas - Full Moon 89 - 01/07/04

The Channel
Tones Are Falling
C-Side Records

Last issue I wished for an Elephant 6 gift for Xmas. Well, ,ot this time. BUT. Some weeks before December appeared I received a disc holding sort of E6 influenced tones. The Channel claim to be inspired by Beach Boys, Beatles and the pop sound of the Elephant 6 collective. Yes, it's true, and yes it's good!

Tip-toed, good-hearted, slightly psychedelic pop is what hides on Tones Are Falling, the Channel's first album offering. In fact the copy I'm holding is a remixed, remastered version of the original album. (Since then they've put out another LP, The Road to Angelove. There are also two EPs out, Personalized - the title track is included here - and King of Spain.) The Channel personnel (or, dare I say collective) count Brent Pennington (vocals, electric guitar, keyboard, mandolin), Colby Pennington (vocals, guitars, harmonica), Chris Gregory (bass), Jamie Reaves (steel guitar, percussion, keyboard, electric guitar, vocals), Andy McAllister (drums, etc) and Heather Pennington (keyboard, electric guitar, vocals). The family grows bigger - literary speaking - on this album with additional playing by Rebecca Pennington and Ben Reaves (both trumpet) and Kimberley Pennington (on fiddle, chorus). Even though this album was recorded back in 2001, this, the revised version was put out some months back into last year.

Tones Are Falling starts out reminding me of some of Olivia Tremor Control's stuff. Not bad! In fact very good! Songs like the opening (not counting the intro) song "Paul Bee and His Nutria" and "Renee Bobotics". "Green Grass" makes me think of Yo La Tengo's (the James McNew written) "Stockholm Syndrome". Then comes the sort of Neutral Milk Hotel meets the Beatles track "The Tide". Or should I mention the very fine steel-driven ballad "No Tears".

All in all Tones Are Falling is very, very good, and it keeps growing on me. It's a colorful and festive album. Tune in to the channel yourself as well. You won't regret it.

PS! Thanx to Matt at C-Side for telling!

Copyright © 2004 Håvard Oppøyen e-mail address

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