Music Review: Sparklehorse ‘Light Years’ ahead on latest disc

After five years, alternative rock outfit Sparklehorse has released its latest album “Dreamt for Light Years in the Belly of a Mountain.”With spaced-out vocals and a catchy pop style, Sparklehorse seamlessly blends all the elements of rock ‘n’ roll to craft its sound.

Singer/songwriter Mark Linkous has undergone many ups and downs during the band’s 10-year career, and the band’s latest album communicates his thoughts and emotions better than previous releases.

Linkous is known not only for his critically-acclaimed work with Sparklehorse, but also as a producer for other bands, most notably for his work with Gnarls Barkley’s DJ Danger Mouse, both on his own albums and Danger Mouse’s.

The band seems to have found a void in the music world by crafting songs that are as futuristic as they are timeless. From the solid opener “Don’t Take My Sunshine Away” to the dark and haunting “Getting It Wrong” and “Morning Hollow,” the CD delivers everything an album should with a deft talent that comes as naturally as breathing.

The lesser-known, harder side of the North Carolina band shines through with “Ghost In The Sky” and “Knives of Summertime.”

Linkous understands the importance of space and silence in music and implements it effortlessly in his songwriting. The title track, which closes the album, is a marathon at more than 10 minutes, yet keeps listeners engaged thanks to Linkous’ genius.

Sparklehorse’s latest is a solid effort from start to finish, engaging listeners with ease. From fans of the Velvet Underground to any modern rock band today, Sparklehorse is a band that deserves recognition beyond its cult following and critics.

At just over 50 minutes, “Dreamt for Light Years” runs the gamut and shows how having a wide variety of styles and a never-ending strive to push the boundaries makes a band that can last through the ages.