Chris Lee writes songs that are strong, sensual, and sad. He delivers his lines with vowel-bending vocal inflections, somewhat akin to Van Morrison. On this album, produced with Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth, Lee's voice is put out front. For those of you unsure yet what heavy compression sounds like, check out the guitar and bass here - they are often quite squashed. Fortunately, it works well in the mix, allowing the vocal to shine while keeping the guitars warm-sounding and in check. Underpinning the vocal is some fantastic drum work by Andrew Barker, which is cleanly recorded and given a fair amount of natural air. This is a beautiful debut effort from Lee and I look forward to his next. (,

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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