HOME XIV (Cooking Vinyl)

Given that former Mercury Rev member turned hotshot producer Dave Fridmann seems incapable of being involved with a bad album, I had no hesitation in adding this latest long player from American band Home to my Christmas list. Perhaps unsurprisingly, they play a more rural version of the cosmic American music expertly dished out by Mercury Rev and The Flaming Lips: imagine "Deserter's Songs" without the Theremins and saws, played by The Band at Big Pink in 1967 and you'll be on your way. "XIV" is a pleasant, folky thing that's always interesting but never really grips the listener the way most Fridmann productions seem to - perhaps it could be seen as a Stateside equivalent to the gothic folk of the last, Fridmann-helmed Delgados album. Charming and endearing it may be, enduring it probably isn't.