Dan Michaelson produces forlorn Americana to rival The National on heartbroken fifth

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Dan Michaelson & The Coastguards - 'Distance'

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Dan Michaelson & The Coastguards – ‘Distance’

Written in the wake of his divorce, Dan Michaelson’s fifth solo LP since disbanding Absentee in 2008 finds him trying to quantify heartbreak: feeling the weight of a phantom embrace, pinpointing the moment when “love [runs] cold after crackling through your bones”. He’s a beautiful lyricist, never self-pitying nor prone to blame or cliché, but the truest note he and his Coastguards strike is that despairing feeling when your heart becomes a stuck anchor dragging through the murk. Michaelson’s oaken, hefty voice is flecked with creaks of optimism, while the band slump elegantly into their forlorn Americana, to stand proudly alongside the likes of Bill Callahan and The National.

Laura Snapes

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Record label:State51 Conspiracy
Release date:18 Aug, 2014