This year has been a productive one for Glenn Donaldson. The latest from The Reds Pinks and Purples comes on the heels of his Painted Shrines album with Jeremy Earl and just before the upcoming record with new band The Telephone Numbers. The San Francisco songwriter could hardly be accused of slacking in any capacity, but that voracious quantity is only matched by the heartstung perfection of Donaldson’s songs. Uncommon Weather follows the through line from Glenns’ previous LP, Anxiety Art, tracing the shadows of his Bandcamp singles and the EPs You Might Be Happy Someday and I Should Have Helped You. Shades of The Clean, St. Christopher, Brighter and East River Pipe continue to color in the the band’s sound. Though the whole Sarah Records catalog hangs heavy as a talisman for RPP, letting their roster’s knack for evoking a world quietly crumbling among bittersweet hooks lead the way like a shining star.
Lonely souls, awkward encounters, and anxieties that pin a person to the bed hover in the air. The world of Reds, Pinks, and Purples excavates the ache that holds us and the insecurities that feed the ache’s ravenous hunger. So many moments are caught between the sob that won’t resolve and the sigh that’s always there. Yet the way that Donaldson packs the pain softens the blow. The doubts may threaten but the melodies act as sunbeams between the blinds to burn away the darkness. With a quiver of jangles and the soaring hum of synths, Uncommon Weather is a quiet nod across the room. There are some who would parse their feelings through meticulously assembled mixtape meditation, though with Uncommon Weather, Glenn’s saved you the trouble and rounded up thirteen perfect choices to soundtrack the search for the sun beyond the clouds.
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