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Cass McCombs, ‘Dropping the Writ’ (Domino)

Cass McCombs’ third album wrestles Devendra Banhart’s methodical mystery, the Sea and Cake’s jazzy smoothness, and straight-ahead ’70s Cali pop into one scattered, restless package. Insistent album opener “Lionkiller” flies the psych-folk flag both lyrically and vocally, with McCombs barking, “I am called Scorpio” in the midst of a twisted autobiography. On “Full Moon or Infinity,” he’s gently Elliott Smith-like. All the unexpected turns are usually pleasant and/or intriguing, but McCombs rarely stays in one mode long enough to find something truly compelling.

Now Hear This: Cass McCombs – “That’s That” DOWNLOAD MP3