Spin - "The band's latest, PLAZA, is punchier than its predecessor..."
Paste (magazine) - "In 'Eliot St.,' the band shores up its cadre of emotional vibrations, plucking adolescent memoir and pairing it with the candor of open-sourced songwriting, wrenching haunted melodies from the mire of old and broken wishes."
Pitchfork (Website) - "When Anna Fox Rochinski and Butler throw in a key shift on opener 'Passerby' that evokes a sitar-like, resonator guitar tone, it's as if they hit the whammy bar on the song itself during playback."
Clash (magazine) - "To generalise a bit, the songs fronted by Rochinski tend toward the aggressive and rhythmic while the Butler-led tracks lean warmer and more winsome."
Personnel: John Andrews (vocals, guitar, harmonica, piano, organ, drums, percussion); Shane Butler (vocals, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, loops); Anna Rochinski (vocals, electric guitar, organ, keyboards, synthesizer); Kevin Lareau (acoustic guitar); Fung Chern Hwei, Amy Bateman (violin); Joanna Mattrey (viola); Clara Kennedy (cello).
Audio Mixer: Al Carlson.
Recording information: Gary's Electric, Brooklyn, NY (2015).
After spending much of 2014 on the road touring in support of Held in Splendor, Quilt began working on songs for their third album in a historic building in Atlanta -- a long way from their Boston home base. Being so far from home may have contributed to the rootless, restless feeling underpinning Plaza; nearly all of its songs are about being in flux. "Are you looking for an answer? Are you looking for a cure? Maybe you should want more," Anna Fox Rochinski sings on the prickly "O'Connor's Barn," while Shane Butler sighs "I'll be fine in confusion" on "Padova" as a harp underscores his fragile state of mind. Paradoxically, this searching and indecision result in some of Quilt's most focused music yet. Reunited with Woods' Jarvis Taveniere as producer, the band sounds less mystical than it did on Held in Splendor. While drifting tracks such as "Passersby" and "Your Island" recall that album, Plaza's most attention-getting songs have a little more bite. The standout "Searching For" is a throwback to classic psych-pop that falls somewhere in between "Paperback Writer" and "Pleasant Valley Sunday"; "Hissing My Plea" dresses the album's concerns up in groovy strings and go-go boots; and "Own Ways" closes the album on a note somewhere between triumphant and defiant as the band ultimately finds its path. Fittingly, Quilt's wanderlust is also reflected in expanded musical horizons that range from "Roller"'s crisp pop, which provides one of many fine showcases for new bassist Keven Lareau, to the more wistful territory of "Eliot St." and "Something There." Even if Quilt don't always find the answers they're looking for on Plaza, they've found some of their most confident and cohesive music. ~ Heather Phares