Blitzen Trapper Finds a Down-Home Vibe

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Thursday's Pick

  • Song: "Silver Moon"
  • Artist: Blitzen Trapper
  • CD: EP
  • Genre: Rock
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Blitzen Trapper gets uncharacteristically focused and direct in "Silver Moon." Jade Harris hide caption

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Blitzen Trapper is known for a dizzyingly rapid-fire approach to its musical influences, channeling both the ramshackle slacker assault of Pavement and the roots-rock swagger of Creedence Clearwater Revival, all while throwing in psychedelic prog-rock riffs and ferocious punk energy. Still, for a band that specializes in radical genre-bending, Blitzen Trapper gets uncharacteristically focused and direct on its short new six-song EP. The collection follows last year's mostly overlooked but critically praised Wild Mountain Nation, with concise songs that stick to understated lullabies and rollicking AM country-rock, a style that made Nation's best tunes so successful.

In all of its two and a half minutes, "Silver Moon" finds singer Eric Earley guiding the band through a hooky chorus, backed by the infectious sounds of a harmonica. As he sings, "Oh, what a silver moon / Sings by the light of the room / And a song is the shape of a strange balloon," the confident and raucous anthem highlights Earley's love of The Band's down-home vibe. Blitzen Trapper veers into unevenness at times — it draws from so many bands and styles that it's inevitable — but when it limits itself to what it does best, songs like "Silver Moon" shine.

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