The newest release from Larry and His Flask offers a different musical flavor on each track. You get a touch of Irish punk on "The Battle for Clear Sight," banjo-based flamenco on "Log, Hearth and Ash" and some rollicking acoustic rockabilly on "Home of the Slave." Not sticking to one genre frees the Oregon band from any labels to live up to, and yet By the Lamplight is the five-piece's most coherent effort to date. The group's previous albums falter under the weight of too many style changes. This one navigates mood and speed like a good mixtape, each track following the other in a deliberate and logical order.
Ian Cook's voice is one of the most clean and tuned-up I've heard accompanying strings in a long time. Unless he just woke up one morning and said, "Well I've mastered karaoke, time to make a living on this," he's definitely had some professional training. That goes for the rest of the band as well. It's a star ensemble cast as a Western cabaret house band.
Larry and His Flask and Birds Mile Home play the Palace on Sun., July 14, at 9 PM. $8, tickets available at Rockin Rudy's and jadepresents.com.