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Album review: 'Taller Hearts Will Prevail' 

Trevor Courneen

'Taller Hearts Will Prevail'

Self-released

trevorcourneen.bandcamp.com

Out on May 7, former Rochesterian Trevor Courneen's new full-length album "Taller Hearts Will Prevail" is steeped in lo-fi, 90's-tinged indie rock. Mixed and mastered by Courneen's long-time recording collaborator Ben Morey, the music has real polish. And while the album's nine tracks provide a comfy soundscape of warm, jangly guitar pop, it's the confessional vocal delivery and unassuming lyrics that tug at the listener's ears.

Courneen's conversational voice combines the earnestness of the late Elliott Smith with Conor Oberst's tonal vulnerability. Nowhere is that alchemy more apparent than on the sweetly sincere "Vowels." "Taller Hearts Will Prevail" really hits its stride halfway through, with back-to-back winners: "Kinds of Contact," with its catchy, circular melody, and the weirdly anthemic "All These Houses." Courneen has Rochester shows at Abilene Bar and Lounge on May 22 and Small World Books on May 24.

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