Radar Bros.

The Fallen Leaf Pages
(Merge Records)

Rock is like a young Clark Kent still discovering his abilities: sometimes a little immature in the application. Thus rock sometimes feels the need to demonstrate its dominance, slapping its roaring guitar member on the table like a grotesque gavel. But majesty is another form of power, and delicacy can thunder mightily in its own manner. So it is that Jim Putnam left the miasmic noise-rock act Medicine and took his own tack in 1995, beginning the Radar Bros., replacing the kaleidoscopic shimmer of distortion with pretty, pastoral psych-pop. The band's compositions are simple -- a dewy daybreak, billowing like the to and fro of a butterfly's wings. But like their model -- early Meddle-era Pink Floyd tracks such as "San Tropez" -- there's a lot of detail in the laconic, melodic warmth, whose rich harmonies recall a heavily sedated Beach Boys. The Bros. haven't progressed a whole lot since their debut, but they've honed the sound, and this, their fourth album, is a great, sunny slo-core crawl through a palette of bright colors.

Radar Bros., and El Oso Negro are scheduled to perform on Wednesday, May 4, at Modified Arts.

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