Last week I finally got my hands on Majical Cloudz’ Impersonator, and it’s a stunner.

Steve, my long-time friend and co-conspirator, has said that he prefers minimalism in songwriting because there’s nowhere to hide, and Impersonator illustrates his point perfectly. The arrangements are unsettlingly spare, and oh, that voice: hearing Devon Welsh sing “can you see me caving in” on “ChildhoodrS End” nearly stopped me in my tracks while walking down Wacker Drive yesterday.

Part of the reason I think I like it so much is that, in the last couple of years, our live show has taken on some of the stripped-down qualities of Majical Cloudz’ songs. This change was more out of necessity than of deliberate choice: our second (and probably final) guitar player left the band back in 2011, and not long after that our drummer Mike (who plays on 7 tracks from the upcoming record) started a new job which made live performance difficult for him. So, in performances, our songs have been stripped down to just guitar, piano, and programmed electronics.

But back to Majical Cloudz. This might shape up to be my favorite song of the year (and accompanied by a great video, too!):