The Lighthouse and the Whaler

8 p.m. Tuesday, January 25. Cicero's, 6691 Delmar Boulevard, University City.

Now that Sufjan Stevens has embraced electro-deconstruction and revealed that he was only kidding about that whole 50 states project, it's fallen to umpteen indie Americana-philes to resume the folksy cartography. On its 2009 self-titled debut, the Lighthouse and the Whaler makes a few explicit nods to its native Ohio, but the band gets good mileage out of Midwestern candor and chamber-folk blandishments. The arrangements break no ground but cover it in a glittery gauze: Plinking glockenspiel, steady strumming guitars and bouzoukis, brushed and dampened drums, high school recital harmonies and lots of strings — sometimes primitively plucked, sometimes numinously raised — abound. Songwriter Michael LoPresti soaks his voice in bittersweet reverb to woo the world (and the girls) he'll never understand, but the string-scored melodies offer hope that's more than a consoling illusion.

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Is this even a review? I havent heard all of TLATW's songs, but im barely convinced you have either... this seems more like an exercise in jamming together as much pretentious vocabulary and terminology as will fit in a single paragraph, without actually expressing any actual opinion, summary, or thesis on the band. which, by the way, is usually the main goal of a (readable) review

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