For a co-called psychedelic pop combo, the Great Lakes throw a surprising amount of rootsy irreverence into their third release. The Athens, Georgia, band’s lineup has included members of Neutral Milk Hotel and Of Montreal, so one might expect the kind of angular, retro new wave pop associated with those groups. Once the gorgeous opening track, “The Pinks And The Purples”, kicks in, however, genre lines become delightfully fuzzed. Opening with a progressive wash of synths, the song slowly morphs into an epic, rusty narrative, much in the vein of classic Band. Elsewhere, “Farther” and “Hot Cosmos” rock with a definite Gram/Graham vibe (both Parsons and Parker). “Even demons have their reasons,” sings Ben Crum on “Cosmos”, wallowing in the inherent depravity that thankfully cuts across labels and limits. Diamond Times is true Americana: tarnished, perilously inebriated and pure.
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