Vetiver – Complete Strangers
Ostensibly the trade name of San Francisco's Andy Cabic, the sixth Vetiver album is a mish-mash of sleepy grooves, tender ballads and conveyor folk rock. That he's still compared with the likes of Conor Oberst and Beck is mind-boggling because Complete Strangers is a sterile and lifeless bore, a smoothing out of trad shapes that makes Jason Mraz seem vaguely dangerous.
The drifting beats of Current Carry ("I think we're on our way / Finally out to sea / Coasting on a wave, free") are little more than lazy-ass jamming. But it gets worse; the likes of Time Flies By ("Blearly-eyed, years collide like clouds in the sky") and Confiding ("In a maze lost without a trace / Every time I think I can escape") typify a lyric sheet awkward and unaffecting. "I'm still figuring the album out," claims Cabic. Seriously? Nah. If you prefer your singer songwriters possessed of an ounce of soul or wit, keep moving.