Verdict: Nun veteran acquires new habit
Given his service in the Clean, the Bats and various other sideline bands, it might be thought that Robert Scott is getting his long-service prize from Flying Nun with this album, he being the first of the revived indie label's old school to release something new on it.
But it's an album that actually sounds like one of the best, most realised records Scott has yet delivered and a big step forward from the DIY experiment of 2001's previous solo effort The Creeping Unknown.
Though there is a fair dollop of abstract sonic touches around the edges of this (as well as accordions and lush strings), it's closest perhaps to the wiry, wistful atmospheres that marked solo albums by Clean bandmate David Kilgour as well as having echoes of Australian indie heroes the Go-Betweens (Greenwood Tree sounds haunted by the ghost of Grant McLennan, that group's late co-frontman).
Scott sounds confident carrying some of the slower numbers in a lower singing register than the keening voice that became a Bats' trademark.
That said, this also displays the tunepower and folk-rock energy of the Bats - especially on the propulsive and quietly soaring The Rising Tide, opener On the Lake and the giddy fuzzy Days Run Together.
While the album's seemingly string-laden centrepiece Born in A Tent shows that though this might be back-to-the-drawing-board for Scott and Flying Nun, some impressively grand designs are the happy result.
-TimeOutBy Russell Baillie @RBaillieNZH Email Russell