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Posted at 12:14 PM ET, 07/15/2011

Album review: “Live From Nowhere Near You, Vol. 2”

The second volume of the “Live From Nowhere . . .” series places a heavy emphasis on indie rock males, sensitive depressives division: Elliott Smith and Bright Eyes make appearances, as do a solo Isaac Brock (from Modest Mouse) and James Mercer (from the Shins) and a host of street musicians.

The tracks on this triple-disc benefit album (proceeds go to a homeless charity) tend toward acoustic and electro folk or stripped-down, grunge-reminiscent rock, though there’s a sprawling, indefinable cover of Marvin Gaye’s “Mercy Mercy Me” by Eddie Vedder, Josh Homme and the Strokes and an equally great pairing of Bright Eyes and Spoon’s Britt Daniel on the former’s “Southern State.”

There are a few standouts (Duover’s Nathan Jr., the Helio Sequence, Brad’s Shawn Smith) and no clunkers; even though three discs means three times the mournful philosophizing, it’s never a slog. And it’s probably the only time you’ll ever find Daniel Johnston and Third Eye Blind in the same place.

By Allison Stewart  |  12:14 PM ET, 07/15/2011

Categories:  Album reviews | Tags:  Elliott Smith, Bright Eyes, Eddie Vedder, The Strokes

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