Love Inks – Exi
…In which the Austin trio further refine their minimalist sound to yet more sombre proportions. Where jangling guitars once nagged and prodded atop simplistic electronics, here single chords hang heavy and suggestively between phrases, leaving Sherry LeBlanc’s gentle sighs to carry the melody. These hushed textures initially obliterate each track’s distinguishing features, until you’re hooked by an emotive sophistication generated almost entirely by space and nuance.
As ever with Love Inks, it’s difficult not to think of Young Marble Giants when the indie veterans’ ideas are co-opted so efficiently, but to reduce the younger band to post-punk pilferers is to denigrate their knack for excellent songs. “Give me a break / Give me your lungs hollowed out,” goes opener Shoot 100 Panes Of Glass, where subtle character sketches lend morose beauty to a compelling hook. Meanwhile Kevin Dehan’s subtly-deployed basslines lend propulsion to the sterling title track; bewitching brilliance for lamplit nights alone. [Will Fitzpatrick]