Boston Spaceships – Let It Beard album review

Where to start with Robert Pollard? It’s barely weeks since his last solo offering and the former GBV frontman is back already – this time with the soon to be disbanded Boston Spaceships, also featuring Chris Slusarenko from GBV and John Moen who you might know from the Decemberists.

Let it Beard – their fifth and final release – is a double album of 26 tracks with surprisingly little filler – a testament to Pollard’s knack for never letting a song overstay its welcome. Tourist UFO is an early standout and as good anything the Spaceships have written – even before guest guitarist J. Mascis drops by to sign it off with an unmistakably brilliant solo.

While Pollard is sometimes criticised for not straying far enough from the GBV template, there’s also some more experimental material here – not least the krautrock-tinged German Field of Shadows with its rumbling bass and horns.

Thrown in alongside beautifully stripped-back acoustic tracks like No Steamboats there is more than enough to reward the listener over repeated plays.

Let it Beard is the sound of a band checking out on a high.

Review by Andy James