‘Acoustic Sessions’ reveals a tame ‘Saber Tooth Tiger’

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"Acoustic Sessions" is GOASTT's first album, although Lennon has released solo albums. Photo via Chimera Music.

Although it’s tempting at first, don’t be quick to categorize The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger as just another indie outfit.

Comprised of Sean Lennon, the only son of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, and his girlfriend Charlotte Kemp Muhl, an American model, this trendy New York couple makes quite the musical pair.

The duo’s debut album “Acoustic Sessions,” released Oct. 26 on their personal label Chimera Music, is a nine track project that gives listeners a taste of Lennon and Muhl’s musical talents. As the title suggests, the songs are all acoustic, creating an intimacy resemblant of a live performance in a coffeehouse, and it works well for GOASTT.

The first track, “Lavender Road,” sets the tone. An airy duet sung over mellow guitar strums and faint beats of tambourine, the song features beautiful harmonies between Lennon and Muhl. From the introductory lyrics, asking, “Where does the time go/down Lavender Road?” the two sing on, getting lost in fanciful wonders as they travel down its path.

The second song, “Jardin du Luxembourg,” has a faster pace but is just as airy as the first. It is one of the more folk-sounding songs on the album, along with “Rainbows in Gasoline” and “Songs for James.” The influence of 1960s music is apparent in all three — it’s enough to make you forget you’re listening to an album released only last week.

Perhaps their most interesting contribution is “Robot Boy,” a song detailing the life of a lost robot whose fortunate encounter with a robot girl assures him he is not alone. The story starts with a rainstorm, emphasizing the robot’s initial sadness, and ends with pleasant guitar strokes when he is no longer lost. It’s a quirky topic to say the least, but the song is one of the album’s best.

Amidst all of their whimsies, however, Lennon and Muhl go a little crazy with the imagery, using at least two or three distinct metaphors or similes in each song.

In “Shroedinger’s Cat,” for example, their chorus chants the phrase, “Like a tree that falls alone in the woods without a sound/you can’t be sure that I exist when you are not around.” This statement may be profound, but it also seems forced.

The most obscure song on the record is “Dark Matter,” which drowns in clichés. It’s another soft, whimsical tune with complementary harmonies, but its chorus sings, “Wake me in a thousand years/when computers can shed tears. Do I have to die before I see/pigs fly and the fat lady sing?” It’s a pretty melody, but the listener is left confused about its meaning.

Although slightly more conventional than what you might expect from Sean Lennon, known in the indie scene for his more experimental solo work, “Acoustic Sessions” is still a success. All nine songs may have a similar sound, but that makes it an album easy to listen to straight through.

GOASTT’s debut captures elements of music from the era that Lennon’s father thrived in and fuses them effectively with current folk and indie styles, creating a sweet, calm sound that’s just right for a mellow day.

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