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The Moonlight Butterfly

6 customer reviews

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Audio CD, May 10, 2011
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Editorial Reviews

In January of this year Sam Prekop, Archer Prewitt, John McEntire, and Eric Claridge reconvened at Chicago's Soma Electronic Music Studios to record their latest release The Moonlight Butterfly. This thirty three minute mini'album finds the band delivering much more long form and cinematic pieces. The new songs lean upon the band's more experimental tendencies, taking time to stretch the forms and in someways the new material relates to the way the band re'interprets some of their songs live. With the band making a shorter than usual record they were allowed to take more chances and ended up with a release that leans a bit more towards the instrumental. Rather than having the vocals be the sole focal point the shifts in emphasis to other instruments facilitated a more open approach.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 10, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Thrill Jockey
  • ASIN: B004THWY6I
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #281,682 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By icykyl on July 2, 2011
Format: MP3 Music
The Sea & Cake continue their little saga of contemplative and relaxing albums with this stunning new release. If you've enjoyed their direction since "Everybody," then you'll quickly be happy to discover this album is a continuation of such style, but with lovely experimentation intertwined in the bumps and grooves of the compact disc. Being only 6 songs long and barely over 30 minutes, I'm a little surprised they didn't label this as an EP. That's the one thing that bothers me- where's the rest of the songs? But you know, these are great quality tunes so I shouldn't complain too much. I was taken by huge surprise when I first discovered TS&C with "Everybody," then later picking up the tremendous "Car Alarm" and much of their masterful back catalog such as "Nassau" "The Biz" and of course their self titled debut. They've changed a lot along the way, and I still really love their always jazzy blends of indie rock. The Moonlight Butterfly almost seems to have come out of nowhere (I'm the first review 2 months after it was released), but don't think that the lack of popularity makes this sub-par. The album is so cohesive that tracks just shouldn't be listened to individually- it's a wholesome experience that demands your attention. There's slight experimentation in some senses. The biggest can be seen on, for example, the title track, which utilizes more electronic sounds and synthesizers than TS&C have been using recently (reminds me of Sam Prekop's newest solo effort), and on here appears the 10 minute epic "Inn Keeping". Many interesting effects are used to exciting extents starting with the opening track, and it really produces a lovely atmosphere! And of course there's Prekop's perfect, whisper/light-as-air vocals and John McEntire's precise and dynamic drumming.Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Scott Hedegard on April 7, 2012
Format: Audio CD
One thing about having a rather long reviews history, it gives me the opportunity to expose lesser known but no less great musicians and bands to those who might check a review on a much more well known band. In keeping with my truly spastic musical tastes, while I am digging the hell out of Mastodon and the newest Ministry albums, I also have a soft spot for mellow jazz influenced or slightly psychedelic music in the mode of quieter Pink Floyd moments, for example.
Those who are fans of Pink Floyd and Steely Dan, take serious note. While The Sea and Cake isn't derivative of either band, they still have the ethereal quality of Floyd and the jazz chops of Steely Dan, albeit a more sedate approach. Sam Prekop's nearly whispered voice practically floats in mid-air and makes this, like everything S & C have done since their "Fawn" album a hypnotic experience.
"The Moonlight Butterfly" is a shorter CD at 33 minutes and apparently is an interim release while they work on a new full length album. But don't let its brevity turn you away. This time around, the band has opted for longer instrumental passages, like the title track and are delving into some mild but different (for them) electronica amid the smooth guitar work. It's an interesting direction, and maybe a hint at a new sound that may present itself in full form on the next album.
Sonically it's the most captivating since their great album "Oui", still the greatest album The Sea And Cake ever did, in this reviewer's opinion. It's great for nighttime, the stars and open road, provided you aren't sleepy, because this stuff is so dreamy you will nod off if you're not careful. But that doesn't mean it's dull, by any means. "The Moonlight Butterfly", like its name suggests, gently caresses the ear and lifts you into a different plane of existence, even if it's only for a little over half an hour. Get "Oui" and play them back to back for a longer listen.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
What a cool album, and such a unique sound. The opening song 'covers' caught my attention in a coffee shop. I asked a worker: "What is this song?" I was told within a minute, and purchased The Moonlight Butterfly within the day.

The bass lines are penetrating, prodding, and this forms the BASSis for their sound. The guitar is light, airy and sparse. This does not mean it is easy to play. Making music this good takes talent. These guys have been around for years. Why have I not heard of them before?

Highly recommend.
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