CHRIS COHEN (CLEAR VINYL)
Chris Cohen's songs initially sound easy. They're each tiny jewels that unfurl at a leisurely pace, but dig a little deeper and you'll reach a melancholy core. His previous two albums - 2012's Overgrown Path, and 2016's As If Apart - were built from lush, blurry tracks that embedded themselves in your subconscious, like they'd always been there. Chris Cohen, his third solo album, is a thoughtful, accomplished meditation on life and family, backed by dusky instrumentation influenced by the late evening beauty of Pat Metheny's Falcon and the Snowman soundtrack, and Thomas Dolby's Golden Age of Wireless. It's beautiful, but it's also unflinching in its depiction of emotional turmoil.Mastered by Bernie Grundman and written and recorded in his Lincoln Heights studio and at Tropico Beauties in Glendale, California over the course of the last two years with the help of Katy Davidson (Dear Nora), Luke Csehak (Happy Jawbone Family Band), Zach Phillips, and saxophonist Kasey Knudsen, it is his most straightforward album yet, but it is also the conclusion of an unofficial cycle that began with Overgrown Path.