Even When the Time Comes
Five-track EP from Johnstown's Brandon Locher. Knowing that one of these tracks was mastered by Nick Zammuto of The Books might help guide you toward an understanding of what The Meets is like: An understated but intentional compositional framework is overlaid with complex sound collage. Locher is helped along by a loose coalition of players (as is his wont), but this work shows exactly where he's at as an artist — not a virtuoso player, but a virtuoso thinker.
Wires and Cables
Another release from the side project of Triggers' Joe Kasler. Pretty, driving guitar rock with some mean drumming. Some tracks are more exciting than others — opener "Lunar" has a lot more energy than the repetitive slow-burner "Price of Admission" — but on the whole, it's a fun ride. Only the title track includes vocals, which is a nice touch, and is OK since these tunes have a certain momentum without.
Nice, light tunes, mostly acoustic guitar-based. Topics range from the usual looking-for-love stuff to more heady material, like the Civil War. McLaughlin's vocals aren't the strongest, but he seems to understand that, and doesn't try to overdo it. (Though maybe bringing an opera singer on board for backup vocals isn't the best idea when that's the case!) Great guitar work, and there's a nice original Christmas song thrown in for good measure.