It's been well over five years since Sparklehorse's enchanting It's A Wonderful Life, but although his usual crew of musicians and guests - including producer Dave Fridmann, and Tom Waits playing piano on one track - has been augmented here by the Midas touch of Danger Mouse (Gorillaz, Gnarls Barkley), Dreamt For Light Years... continues in a very similar vein. There's the same gentle charm, the same unhurried pace, the same patinated background of ambient noises, the same tints and highlights of cello and glockenspiel, and the same lyrical menagerie of horses, spiders and suchlike, their doings recounted in the same intimate whisper. "If you were a horse," Mark Linkous observes in "Shade and Honey", "I could help you with your chains/ I could ride you through the fields/ While your fire remains". The album reaches a warmly satisfying conclusion with the title track, a contemplative 10-minute instrumental that builds from slow vibrato guitar and wistful piano to an understated harmonium climax, like a bear waking from hibernation.
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