Hotel Lights Flicker

I'm sure it is a minor annoyance to always be mentioned alongside a band member's former band, but with Hotel Lights' Darren Jessee (of Ben Folds Five), it's also inevitable. The Five still hold an impressive stranglehold on the nostalgic tweener years of an entire generation of nerds and piano-pop aficionados, as evidenced by the recent 30-minute sellout of their one-and-only reunion show in Chapel Hill, NC, and tickets now being scalped for almost $1,000.

Hotel Lights, however, is nothing like the Five, and it's probably a good thing. Who knew Darren Jessee would have the songwriting chops (and voice, for that matter) to lead an act of such restrained potency? I guess "Magic" wasn't a fluke after all. This album is as listenable as La Fin Du Monde is drinkable, an album for sipping slowly, for rain-gazing, for dandelion-blowing, for thoughtful reflection. The patience is palpable and it flows lazily, like a brook winding through woods, into your backyard. It's just there at the fenceline, old as your great grandaddy, gushing on by, just there for you to listen to and lose yourself in.

Dream State Flying
Wedding Day
[from Firecracker People|buy]


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