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Slow Note From a Sinking Ship

5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Audio CD, June 20, 1995
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Mac McCaughan, founder of the North Carolina label Merge, takes a break from the melodic punk guitars of his better-known band, Superchunk, to brew a low-key batch of songs under an alias that salutes the static of the Portastudio four-track tape recorder. His second album of home and studio concoctions featuring mostly Mac (with friends like Helium's Ash Bowie and Superchunk's Jon Wurster), Slow Note from a Sinking Ship is a taste of the stuff McCaughan dreams up that falls outside the narrow stylistic realm of his main band. Much of Slow Note--notably "When You Crashed," "Running Water," and "A Cunning Latch"--is an unusual but not entirely unfamiliar clash of lazy lap steel, woozy acoustic strumming, new wave synth sounds, and postpunk guitar-effect washes. Mac impressively balances the looseness and immediacy of lo-fi with a fairly clean studio sound to make what he calls a "totally mid-fi" record. --Roni Sarig
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 20, 1995)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Merge Records
  • ASIN: B0000019NY
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #413,486 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Format: Audio CD
Mac McCaughan's work is always strong, and I feel, of all the Superchunk/Portastatic records, this is the best. Mac's been one of the most consistently great artists of the last decade or so, without receiving the critical adulation poured on the Steven Malkmuses and Elliot Smiths of the indie community. On this record, "Skinny Glasses Girl", "In the Manner of Anne Frank" & most notably (my favorite Superchunk/Portastatic song) "On Our Hands" all show, if nothing else, that the man knows how to write a great song. I guess the time has passed for McCaughan to record a great critical and popular success, but he seems O.K. with that (I saw him onstage w/ Yo La Tengo looking content to just blend in). Hopefully, he has at least another decade of music in him. Bottom line: buy the stupid CD already.
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By A Customer on June 16, 2000
Format: Audio CD
This is one of my favorie cds of all time- greatlyunderappreciated by the masses, this album is for any fan ofSuperchunk or anyone who like a catchy hook. Did I say catchy hook? There seems to be an album full of them. Starting with "you crashed", every song has got a great sing along catch phrase that will get in your head and keep you hooked. The large majority of this recording was played by mac, and there are quite a variety of instruments (guitar, drums, lap steel, luggage, crazy keyboards, etc.) that add up to a thick, well produced mixture. This cd is so strong from start to finish that I can go on and on. Let me just say this- its perfect indie pop, done with no pretense. Its a guy pouring his heart out in songs of emotion and personal experience. Its very original, complex and different sounding musically, but would go over with almost any listener due to its catchy easy sound. It even has a cool cover. If there is one week spot, it is the fact that you will have the last song cranked up and then out of nowhere about ten minutes later the hidden track will blast through your speakers and scare you. Besides that, I can't think of another reason not to own this cd. And thats not a good reason.
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By A Customer on July 26, 2000
Format: Audio CD
you know how music justs gets into your soul and you find it going through your head in a good way, like at work when your toiling away and its a comfort to keep the music with you? Well, I really love these songs, especially San Andreas, its beautiful!
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