Sea Wolf

8 p.m. Friday, October 2. The Billiken Club, in the Busch Student Center on the campus of Saint Louis University, 20 North Grand Boulevard.

Sep 30, 2009 at 4:00 am

Jack London's novel Sea Wolf is a tale of the destructive potential of a single, domineering vision. For all his gifts, Alex Brown Church, who named his band after the parable, isn't one to go it alone. Were it not for his big canvas collaborations, he'd drown in Bright Eyes comparisons (and his voice does suggest a kinder, gentler Conor). On the recently released White Water, White Bloom, the Angelino doesn't just indulge in hyper-tracked strings, pedal steel and pump organs — he surrenders, and receives the mercy of melody in return. Church may write like an English major — "You're the whispering kind/Dark sapphire blood/A vision of veils all shimmery white" is typical of his pastoralist métier — but he shapes songs like an orchestral pop savant.