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Preview: My Morning Jacket 

On the heels of the band’s new release The Waterfall, MMJ hits Champions Square July 31

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On The Waterfall (ATO), My Morning Jacket fumbles through its pockets and finds scraps of every band it's ever been: silo-shaking Kentucky farm boys, epically sad country balladeers, six-string-windmilling guitar heroes, orbital Saturn surfers, falsetto-funk drag kings and baked-crispy chakra ramblers. It's tempting to call this seventh LP a something-for-everyone approach, yet Jim James does nothing for anyone outside his five-man circle, which has earned the loyalty and then some by remaining a contained unit through lean early years, several lineup changes, the buzz-band buildup and the arena-headlining blowup, not to mention the mantle-shunning detours that followed — weird candylands springing "peanut butter pudding surprises" as if trying to lose their own scent. If it ever was gone, one whiff of The Waterfall confirms the return. Despite sounding different on every track, each song is unmistakably MMJ: escalating opener "Believe (Nobody Knows)," the triumphant crowd-rouser; groove-digging single "Compound Fracture," the easy disco-baller; three-part prog sonata "In Its Infancy (The Waterfall)," the classic-rock anthologist; hayseed finger-picker "Get the Point," the gentle thrill-killer. (Note the chord progression's similarity to "Everybody's Talkin'" and try not to Seinfeld sing-along: "I'm just drivin' around in Jon Voight's car.") James saves the best of himself for last: seven-minute drifter "Only Memories Remain," the gut-shot Marvin Gaye soul man. Pick up the deluxe edition for four more looks, including "Hillside Song," a pseudo Inside Llewyn Davis outtake and the finest singer/songwriter sketch James has done since At Dawn. Tickets $36.10-$55.50 (includes fees).


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