You kind of feel you’ve been shortchanged
There is, of course, a great deal to be said for the virtues of a gleaming set of pipes, regurgitating their keeper’s soul through a larynx so vast it could swallow black holes. But listening in on the quiet storm at the heart of Toronto’s Cold Specks, namely mainlady Al Spx (an alias – she’s undercover from her disapproving parents), you kind of feel you’ve been shortchanged.
Not by its ambition – ‘Blank Maps’’ refrain of “[i]I am, I am/A goddamn believer[/i]” is bizarrely compelling, at once grand yet also gentle. Nor by the post-Arcade Fireisms all over the bare bones and The xx-evoking gospel of ‘Winter Solstice’. And here is the authentic feel of Willis Earl Beal, yet lacking his clumsy but charming single-mindedness. If the focus on ‘I Predict A Graceful Expulsion’ is sharp then its scope is overly broad, focusing in on
vague sentiments that leave you fond, but never in love.