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Cotton Jones Basket Ride: The River Strumming

Cotton Jones Basket Ride is the new band fronted by singer-songwriter Michael Nau (former frontman of Page France). The River Strumming is a delightful slab of fuzzed-out dream folk that thumps with a musical heartbeat in a manner not dissimilar to that of forward thinking modern-day shamen like Will Hart and Brightblack Morning Light. This album completed itself, so to speak, forming in pieces over a six month span while the band was working on its debut full-length Paranoid Cocoon (to be released in late 2008). It's composed of songs that are made of the tail end from _this_ song and the drum track from _that_ song, recorded over here and recorded over there, and so on. Nau and company initially set out to make a cohesive record, and made just the opposite. Some songs were recorded on one machine in December, finished on another machine in March, destroyed in April, then attached to another song in May. Likewise, it fits so well with the sort of records that St. Ives is in love with releasing — the three-legged dogs of the world, the records that don't quite fit elsewhere, barely even within an artist's own body of work. The River Strumming is limited to 300 vinyl copies in hand-made packaging — each LP hand-wrought (as all St. Ives releases are) by the band itself — and is not expected to remain in stock long.