II – Rolling Stone
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II

“My dreams would be constantly wilting away,” Unknown Mortal Orchestra singer-guitarist Ruban Nielson informs us on his band’s second album. Bad news for his dreams, good news for his music: The Portland trio make decaying states of consciousness seem like heaven with psychedelic guitar-pop that’s alluringly out of focus. Nielson unspools his delightedly spacey mumble-croon over neo-hippie guitar magma and dusty grooves that might’ve been found in a box out behind Beck’s garage. Dappled flower-pop like “Swim and Sleep (Like a Shark)” and red-eyed geeksoul like “So Good at Being in Trouble” give off a sense that Nielson’s idea of a good time is putting on his favorite Syd Barrett and Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffitti records and throwing a tea party for his cats. But UMO’s way with a languidly defenestrating tune might have you purring right along with them.

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