Elf Power: Elf Power

Orange Twin

The members of Athens psych-pop outfit Elf Power shared a particularly personal relationship with the late Vic Chesnutt, having collaborated with him on numerous recorded projects and tours. The band's self-titled new album is dedicated to the memory of its good friend, who passed away last year. It's a markedly more intimate album than anything else in the recent Elephant 6 catalog; incidentally, it's also Elf Power's best in years. The record contains its fair share of too-familiar Elf Power moments - the folky, melancholic "Stranger in the Window," or "Spider Eggs," which features a melody singer Andrew Rieger has probably used a thousand times by now - but it also finds the band covering thrilling new ground, as on the cavernous "Boots of Lead." It's been a good season for Athens pop music: The Glands are back, Ham1's got a fine new record, and Elf Power is a beaut. (3 out of 5 stars).