Yo La Tengo: Fade

fadeYo La Tengo
(Matador Records)

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New Jersey rockers Yo La Tengo have been going strong since the ‘80s. With each album, the trio is able to craft sweeping melodies and dreamy, atmospheric indie rock that’s unrelentingly charming. Fade is album number thirteen for Yo La Tengo, and hopefully it will be a lucky release for the band. The group has never charted terribly well in America, but each release is reliable and enjoyable.

Much of Fade is atmospheric enough to feel like a soundtrack sweeping by with a delicate, nuanced touch. With the exception of perhaps opener “Ohm” and its gritty, Guided By Voices-esque distortion, the rest of Fade plays out rather melodically. “Is That Enough,” for instance, has subtle strings to offset the lo-fi guitar sounds. “Cornelia and Jane” has a brilliantly slow build, which is the perfect segue into the hypnotic duality of “Two Trains.”

The one regrettable aspect of Fade is that it doesn’t seem to explore much new territory for the band. But after nearly thirty years, Yo La Tengo are afforded a pass on this. Fade is a consistent piece of indie guitar rock, gentle and growling all at once.

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About Casey Hicks

Casey Hicks toils her daylight hours away in an office high above Manhattan in order to afford nights of passionately scribbling. The first song she remembers ever hearing is "Lola" by the Kinks. She thinks this explains a lot.
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