Kurt Ottaway has been earning praise in this publication since fronting Twice Wilted in the '80s — and why stop now? The debut by Overcasters, his latest project, isn't a radical departure from TW or the Tarmints, a subsequent group. Rather than self-consciously attempting to seem au courant, Ottaway and collaborators such as John Nichols follow their muse on tracks like "Loudsea," built on echo-laden vocals and guitars that reverberate as in the days of yore, and the stormy maelstrom that is "Electrocution." Still, the act's palette includes more colors than just black: "Hey Hope" is unexpectedly optimistic, while "Expect the Worst" contradicts its moniker with a bright, strangely upbeat melody. The Overcasters' forecast may call for rain, but don't be surprised by the occasional ray of sunshine.


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