Luna Kafé e-zine  Luna Kafé record review
coverpic flag US - New York - Full Moon 95 - 07/02/04

David Grubbs
A Guess at the Riddle
Fat Cat

David Grubbs has quite a history, as a member of Red Krayola and Gastr del Sol. His solo career spans nine albums too. Now comes his latest. The words are clever and demanding and the music is smart and imaginative.

"A Cold Apple" chimes like Elliott Smith used to. "Wave Generators" has words by author Rick Moody (The Ice Storm) and they are fascinating. Musically it's lifted by a cello and some vocal levity by Grubbs. "You'll never tame me" is based on an experience during an Iggy Pop Concert but its hardly a hard rockin' song. It's elegant chamber pop with a drifting mood.

"Your Neck in the woods" is remarkable. "What's new in your neck of the woods / I'm curious because people here don't care" ponders Grubbs as he plays the piano. The narrator of "One way out if the maze" seeks escape but can't achieve it. Musically it nods towards Lou Reed.

This record is a thoughtful, poised thing.

Copyright © 2004 Anna Maria Stjärnell e-mail address

You may also want to check out our David Grubbs articles/reviews: An Optimist Notes the Dusk, Prismrose, The Plain Where the Palace Stood.

© 2011 Luna Kafé