Joseph Arthur -- Nuclear Daydream

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Joseph Arthur -- Nuclear Daydream

The multitalented Joseph Arthur (view his striking artwork at JosephArthur.com) is a metaphysician who fashions his complex interior monologues into deceptively simple pop songs. Nuclear Daydream, his fifth album, is post-apocalyptic religious music, endlessly ponderable and disturbingly beautiful. It opens with the piano chords, throbbing bass and tambourine of “Too Much to Hide,” introducing Arthur’s deadly earnest voice as he considers the secrets humans hide from each other within a lithe melody that lifts him to the edge of his aching falsetto. The following, “Black Lexus,” seems inspired by Neil Young’s “After the Gold Rush,” sounding like something the former inhabitants of Earth might sing when their silver seed touches down on their new home atop the sun. The arrangement is distinguished by stacked chorus harmonies that hang glistening below the melody, like stalactites in a cavern. Then comes the New Order-ish “Enough to Get Away,” allowing the listener to take one last breath before Arthur begins his descent in earnest. The album becomes more intoxicatingly hermetic with each successive song, taking you as deep as you dare to go.

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