Strange Ranger, Daymoon (Tiny Engines)
[TIME TRAVEL] Strange Ranger's new album, Daymoon, is a wonderful bummer that will resonate with anyone who feels autumn's slow and mighty current pulling them away from shore. But for listeners of a certain age, Strange Ranger's delicate plaints will also trigger sublime nostalgia trips. The Portland trio is eerily adept at recreating the magic of turn-of-the-century Northwest indie rock, and it is as comforting as an electric blanket with a side of Vicodin. On last year's Rot Forever, the band—then known as Sioux Falls—favored rangy, rowdy epics that recalled Modest Mouse's long drives through lonesome lands. Daymoon is less ambitious, and it is better for it. The truly modest "Everything Else," a devastating lullaby clocking in at just over two minutes, deserves a spot right next to Built to Spill's "Twin Falls" in the canon of small and fragile songs that can somehow withstand dozens of consecutive replays. Sure, we will always have There's Nothing Wrong With Love and Weekends of Sound and The Glow, pt. 2 to soundtrack stretches of melancholy retrospection, but there are so many gray and wet and cold and downright miserable seasons still to come. We need more music like this.
SEE IT: Strange Ranger plays Black Water Bar, 835 NE Broadway St., with Mo Troper, Alien Boy and Snow Roller, on Wednesday, Oct. 18. 7 pm. $6. All ages.