Whysall Lane

May 1, 2006

(Blackball Records)


On guitar and lead vocals, ex-Versus singer Richard Baluyut fronts Whysall Lane flanked by Adam Pfahler (ex-Jawbreaker) on drums and Mikel Delgado on bass and vocals. Whysall Lane’s “Not a Fool” push-starts the trip with tranquil, droning organs and melodic chords that build skyward for a self-assuring opener. Next, “Half Life” introduces Delgado’s back up vocals, which provide an angelic foil with Baluyut’s soaring Ian McCulloch impression. Further along, “Pillows,” with its euphonic melody and dreamy, synchronized vocal harmonics, presents Whysall Lane’s soft underbelly. On the flip, “Time Machine” and “Watts” provide sunny, upbeat anthems that trigger an automatic windows-down-volume-up response. Balayut poetically interweaves heartfelt sincerity with playful imagery (“I’m a lonely sea captain/ drifting at half speed.../ When did you/ stop believing in me?”), poignantly delivering a genuine sense of familiarity to all ears. Congratulations. Seriously. —Rudy Beredo

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