Saddle Creek | Now It's Overhead | Reviews


Now It's Overhead

Author: Charles Spano
12/01/2001 | Rockpile Magazine | Album Review
four bombs

Saddle Creek Records has crystallized the idea Omaha, NE., just might be the center of the current indie rock universe. Now the label has released its first non-Omaha full length with the debut from it's good friends in Athens, GA., Now It's Overhead. For a handle on the band's sound, picture a head-on collision between dark synth rockers The Faint and wiz-kid Conor Oberst's Bright Eyes. When you gather up the broken pieces, you'll have a mix of the heartfelt, human songwriting of Andy LeMaster (Bright Eyes) and moody, electronic textures inspired by The Cure. With keyboardist Maria Taylor and multi-instrumentalist Orenda Fink (both of Azure Ray) supplying backing vocals, a sense of breathy harmony floats behind LeMaster's powerful drawl. From the bittersweet "Blackout Curtain" to the hushed "A Skeleton on Display," Now It's Overhead punctuates the lushness of keyboard layers with moments of scarceness and Clay Leverett's soulful, marching backbeat. The sound is organic - this is electronic-driven music with a pulse. "Hold Your Spin" is downright exuberant. In a great year for Saddle Creek, Now It's Overhead is the most exciting release from the label.