The Best Albums In Dallas Music, 2008: Calhoun Pops In At No. 4

Editor's Note: Over the next 10 days, I'll be presenting my favorite local records of the year, counting down from No. 10 to No. 1, one album a day. Keep checking back to see how the list pans out, and, in the meantime, click after the jump to see albums No. 20-11 in the Top 20 list that will update as the it grows...

No. 4: Calhoun - Falter. Waver. Cultivate

It takes more than good songwriting to create a great disc: Everyone involved in it, along every step of the way, needs to be committed to the direction the disc is heading--and they all need to be on the same page, envisioning the same end result.

It's clear from first listen that Calhoun's Falter.Waver.Cultivate was one such blessed disc. Here, producer Stuart Sikes (who has worked with the likes of Cat Power and the White Stripes among others) has used a delicate brush to ensure that the songs from Calhoun frontman Tim Locke are presented just as subtly as Locke and his bandmates had intended them to be.

The songs are catchy and enjoyable takes on indie pop, but it's the nuances and the band's willingness to let the songs just be what they are--and not to blow them up into something bigger--that makes it such a find.

Bonus mp3:

Calhoun -- "Apocalypse (A Love Story)"

Calhoun -- "Apocalypse (A Love Story)"

At once heartbreaking and lifting, Falter.Waver.Cultivate is an 11-track trip through the uncertainties of the lives we lead--while giving due credit to the importance of the journey while en route to its end. --Pete Freedman

The Top 20 Local Releases Of 2008
20. Collin Herring - Past Life Crashing
19. Stumptone - Gravity Suddenly Released
18. Dove Hunter - The Southern Unknown
17. Febrifuge - A Short Instance Of Separation
16. Jonathan Tyler & The Northern Lights - Hot Trottin'
15. Toadies - No Deliverance
14. Record Hop - Record Hop
13. The New Frontiers - Mending
12. Fight Bite - Emerald Eyes
11. Lil Wil - Dolla$, TX
10. Dem Southernfolkz - The Message
9. True Widow - True Widow
8. The Theater Fire - Matter and Light
7. Centro-matic/South San Gabriel - Dual Hawks
6. Sarah Jaffe - Even Born Again EP
5. Mount Righteous - When The Music Starts
4. Calhoun - Falter. Waver. Cultivate
3. ??????
2. ??????
1. ??????

...and keep checking back, as this list will update daily.

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Pete Freedman
Contact: Pete Freedman