For Starflyer 59, longevity and quality go hand-in-hand. Since 1993, Californias finest shoegazers have been churning out lush masterpieces that seem to only improve with time. From albums like Gold (1995) to I Am The Portuguese Blues (2004), the group has remained not only captivating but increasingly innovative as well. Jason Martins haunting vocal display perfectly accompanies the atmospheric mood set by the dreamy guitar lines, creating a sort of glimmering magic that could only come from one of Tooth & Nails most gifted. Starflyer returns in 2008 with Dial M, one of the most personal and lyrically moving records in the bands history. With careful attention paid to building lush layered songs around driving rhythmic acoustics and vulnerable lyrics, Dial M has become an instant standout in the Starflyer catalogue.
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ANOTHER GREAT ALBUM FROM LIVING LEGEND| Posted November 24, 2008
Jason Martin is a living legend. He’s been around as long as his label (Tooth & Nail), and his list of side projects is rather ridiculous given their number and, more importantly, their quality. Neon Horse, Brothers Martin and Bon Voyage all birthed quality discs on the side for Martin and others. All this doesn’t even touch his production work.
So the bar is set quite high for a new Starflyer 59 record. Luckily, his 11th studio LP under the SF59 moniker, Dial M, clears the hurdle with room to spare. The familiar sonic tendencies are there, and the Starflyer signature is evident at the bottom of each song, if you will. Yet, it’s clear Martin has learned a thing or two about strong songwriting along the way.
“The Brightest of the Head” rides a bouncy xylophone amid downturn lyrics like “God forgive what I thought/Forgive what I think” and an eerie keyboard melody. “Automatic” is a minimal tune that features strings to perfectly accentuate a dark, strutting lone guitar tone. “Minor Keys” finds Martin speaking first person about his call on a straightforward groove that ignites the album. It’s also the best tune on Dial M.
All in all, it’s a solid ride from beginning to end and yet another entry in a catalog that solidifies Jason Martin’s place in the music scene. –Matt Conner
This review has been reprinted on NRT with permission from CCMMagazine.com. Click here to visit CCMMagazine.com today!