Calexico, ‘Carried to Dust’ (Quarterstick)
After 12 years and five studio albums, Calexico haven’t lost any of their fascination with the Southwest. Joey Burns and John Convertino’s sonic translations of dust-caked mythologies and hostile sandscapes modernize and polish everyday narratives into gleaming vignettes. Mapping out a nameless wanderer’s road trip, they return to reverb-y, cinematic songs, with Burns’ whispered vocals assisted by guests Sam Beam (Iron and Wine) and Douglas McCombs (Tortoise). Bouncing from South American political icons to snowy Russian cities, Carried to Dust’s songs travel a trail that seems carved out of ancient echoes.