Artist incorporates ironic comedy into newest album

The sleepy, illusory rock sounds of Kurt Vile continue in his beautiful new album, “b’lieve i’m going down.” Written largely after dark, while his wife and children were asleep, the melodic tunes carry the same dramatic weight as his previous albums, but the lyrics are laden with more of his signature ironic humor. In his folkish exploration of the song, “I’m an Outlaw,” lyrics like “alone in a crowd on the corner, in my Walkman in a snow globe going nowhere slow,” Vile mixes feelings of existential confusion, irony and subtly sad but charming humor. These themes run throughout the album as he drops in lines like, “what’s the meaning of this song, and what’s this piece of wood I don’t care it sounds so pretty, it’s change is so sublime, what was the meaning of that last line” in “Kidding Around.” The overall sound remained similar to his typical dreamy style, but with added instrumentation. Banjo and piano sounds have a greater presence, adding contrasting elements of buoyancy to the overall somberness of the album. The piano infusions in “Stand Inside” create a more harmonic feel than acoustic alone would, adding some romance to a song written with his wife in mind.