MusicRecord Reviews

Ducktails: The Flower Lane

Matt Mondanile’s solo work as Ducktails to this point has largely mined kraut and psych resources for bedroom-pop masterpieces, finding dark corners that were more for introverted musings rather than unsettling caustics.

With The Flower Lane, Mondanile has created some of his most open-ended and accessible material yet, and that’s including Real Estate’s relatively clean and polished Days LP. Fuzzy guitar melodies, a jaunty rhythm section, and the swanky production of tracks like “Timothy Shy” and “Under Cover” steer the album into retro, near-yacht rock territory. Mondanile hasn’t quite completely jettisoned his penchant for jangly guitar pop, though; tracks like “Planet Phrom” resemble Felt covering The Byrds, and Mondanile’s vocals coolly recall Dean Wareham’s sedate drawl.

Two of the record’s best songs are “International Dateline” and “Letter of Intent.” The former is a brief, wordless interlude of cyclical, skyward-facing noodling that segues perfectly into the latter, a perfect pop song made for slow dancing. Featuring Daniel Lopatin (Oneohtrix Point Never) on synths, Joel Ford (Tigercity) on bass and Jessa Farkas (Future Shuttle) on vocals, the song is a bizarre and beautiful ode to lovers’ rock.


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