D+: What Is Doubt For?

D+: What Is Doubt For?

B
Album: What Is Doubt For?
Label: Knw-Yr-Own

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If ever there was a town-sized affirmation of the adage "it's the little things," it's Anacortes, Washington. Evidently almost exclusively populated by troubadour introverts who sing in rich whispers and shy from overproduction (or any production), the place is a haven for the kind of music that gets lodged between the soul and the heart. D+ is an Anacortes supergroup of sorts—a collaboration between Beat Happening's Bret Lunsford, Microphones/Mt. Eerie mastermind Phil Elverum, and prolific songsmith Karl Blau. It's been going on for 11 years, and its endgame appears to be complete disappearance by way of musical minimalism. What Is Doubt For? was recorded to a single mic in Elverum's living room, and it sounds like it, but that's what these guys do best. D+ trades in big epiphanies and giant sounds in spite of ever-tightening means, and it's under such controls that the group appears to reach an almost monastic indie bliss. The bass strains the speakers, the drums thump like the pulse of a mountain, and the guitar comes in heavy waves or not at all, carrying forth simple, beatific lines like "I don't think I'll see / Where they'll scatter me / I don't think I'll know / Where I'll be," and "What I don't know about the universe / Could fill the universe." Occasionally, the too-little approach is a bit too much, but fans of the K Records stable won't be disappointed.

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