Abraham Lincoln once said, ''I'm a slow walker, but I never walk back.'' The same holds true for fellow sons of the Prairie State, Maps & Atlases, who, despite a flurry of activity since their inception in 2006, are only now releasing their full-length debut. But it's been worth the wait: not only is Perch Patchwork the Chicago quartet's first long player, it's also their first masterpiece--a beautiful suite of songs that should rightly place the band in indie rock's upper echelon.
The band's previous two EPs employed an arid, live sound, setting up Perch Patchwork to deliver a lush contrast of strings, horns, assorted percussion, and a variety of toy instruments, all placed just-so on some spot-on songwriting. In a world cluttered with digital ephemera, an album that flows from beginning to end with such deliberate grace is all the more specialâ ¦ not to mention a perfect soundtrack for the hissing of summer lawns.