The self-titled 2009 debut by Harper Simon – son of Paul Simon and Peggy Harper – was a folk-rock outing that owed a lot to his dad's fingerpicking elegance and articulate lyricism. You can hear echoes of Simon and Garfunkel's Sixties whimsy on his second album, marinated in sad-swirl guitars that recall Death Cab For Cutie or Elliott Smith (the album is co-produced by Tom Rothrock, who helmed Smith's ornate later albums and members of Wilco and the Strokes appear on the album). Simon's songwriting can feel slight but in a dolorously cute way; on "Bonnie Brae" he falls for a girl who, "came over with a jacket over your shoulder/made you look like Patti Smith." Hubba-hubba.
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