Local CD Review: Tim Lee 3, 'Raucous Americanus'

Tim Lee 3

Raucous Americanus (Cool Dog Sound)

So what's the next step when you're 30 years into a music career? For Tim Lee, it's obvious: make a double album! Raucous Americanus, the Tim Lee 3's latest release, largely ignores the last two decades of popular music for a bracing tour through the darker side of American alt-rock, from the Velvet Underground and Television to West Coast post-punks the Dream Syndicate and the Wipers, with occasional nods to classic '70s FM radio. It's a bleak ride—the music sounds more like a hangover than a party—but it also represents a leap forward for the band. The 3 have found a new spark with the addition of drummer Matt Honkonen, formerly of Tenderhooks, and the emergence of bassist Susan Bauer Lee as a full songwriting partner and singer. The band's chemistry keeps the music chugging along for the full 80 minutes, never letting its momentum drag under the dark tone.