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8. Yellow Ostrich–Strange Land
It's surprising, I think, that no one seems to be paying all that much attention to the new Yellow Ostrich record, Strange Land, the follow-up to their much-praised 2010 debut, The Mistress. Alex Schaff, who basically was Yellow Ostrich before bringing on drummer Michael Tapper (real name, presumably) and multi-instrumentalist Jon Natchez, remains perhaps Brooklyn indie rock's most gifted crafter of melodies and one of its best pure singers, as well. There are harmonies for miles here, and song structures that take plenty of unexpected turns. As ever for fans of the Weakerthans and Dirty Projectors.