There are lots of albums you love despite yourself, and plenty that just plain blow. But Vee Device's sophomore full-length, Autobiography of a Dying Band, is that rare breed of record: one you try hard as hell to like, but can't. After all, the skeleton of this disc is more than sturdy. A twenty-track framework assembled from scraps of songs and tender segues, it's a literate and eclectic labor of love -- or way too much free time and weed. But no amount of nifty pump organ or bowed double bass can save these cruddy acoustic jams from sucking themselves straight down the shitter. According to Vee Device's website, it considers itself an indie-rock band, and while that's a nebulous term, it's usually not inclusive of sub-Adam Duritz, granola-fed moans and noodly mandolin dubbed straight off of a String Cheese Incident bootleg. Identity crisis aside, a real sense of warmth and intelligence somehow wriggles free of all the overwrought flotsam of Autobiography. But it's not enough to make you love it, let alone listen to it twice.
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