Dirty Three 

Cinder

Australian instrumental collective Dirty Three offers a complex, somewhat heady alternative to the predictable, easily interchangeable structures of rock 'n' roll. At the heart of its moody, moving compositions is classically trained violinist Warren Ellis, who has pieced together intricate sonic collages since 1992 and earned a substantial hipster and indie following by supporting big shots including Sonic Youth, Pavement, and John Cale. Cinder, the trio's sixth outing for Touch and Go, is neither a Saturday night nor Sunday morning record: It's a contemplative, rainy-day experience meant for getting lost in, compelling you to forget about the outside world entirely because you're too busy keeping up with the multiple orchestrated happenings, not to mention the rare guest vocal turns from Cat Power and Mekon bombshell Sally Timms. It's also a beautiful break from the verse-chorus-verse norm.

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