Time and Temperature by Judson Claiborne

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Vinyl LP £13.49 LSE017LP

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Time and Temperature by Judson Claiborne
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8/10 ReviewBot3000 03 April 2014

I have a curious LP here from Chicago act Judson Claiborne. Confusingly, the press release for their previous offering describes them as a "band" fronted by Christopher Salveter, but this time round they seem to have morphed into a "he", even going so far as to make reference to "Judson's previous band". Mystifying. There's a sealed envelope in the sleeve of this LP that might hold the answers, but I don't want to spoil it.

Moving on from that, though, 'Time and Temperature' is a gently paced slice of dusky and classic-sounding Americana-indie with elements of bands like Richmond Fontaine or Magnolia Electric Co, with a spacious sensitivity that's sometimes bringing to mind Timber Timbre. Chris/Judson has quite an interesting voice, too, one minute a Sandro Perri falsetto, the next a plangent Chrissie Hynde-esque croon.

I've been struggling to get my head around this record so I've actually given it a couple of spins all the way through and the best I can come up with is that it's like a midpoint between the aforementioned Richmond Fontaine and the Pretenders. There's a lot of country rock elements in here but it's quite slick and sometimes soaring with slide guitar and fiddle lines winding tunefully away over moody indie rock thrum, but there's something about his vocal inflection and phrasing that keeps making me think of Hynde's troupe. I can't listen to 'Song for Dreaming' without picturing her singing the 'Pearl Harbour' song from Team America.

It's a strong collection, they/he has/have an interesting sound and the songs are thoughtfully constructed and have quite a timeless sound to them.



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