Mathis Hunter: Soft Opening 

Shakedown Records

Noot d' Noot drummer Mathis Hunter marks his solo debut with Soft Opening, a psychedelic rock record that's ornate in its subtleties and laid-back by design. "Gathering the Hopeful Gamblers" is a slow explosion of sun-bleached textures that rides on waves of nostalgia, teetering between melancholy and cheer but never leaning too far either way. "See the Light" and "Rapid Cycles" are the unlikely pop-rock opuses here. Both show off previously unheard dimensions of Hunter's voice. There's also a wall of sound quality to the record that mingles with his rich vocal harmonics, recalling Spiritualized and David Crosby in equal measure. "Endless Psalm Sound" closes the album with the Selmanaires harmonizing with Beach Boys-like radiance, adding wistfulness to a record that is as reflective as it is hypnotic. 4 out of 5 stars.

Read Chad Radford's Q&A with Mathis Hunter at clcribnotes.com.

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