"The Matt Sheffer Songbook, Vol. 1” C40 (Pretty Purgatory)

Friend Roulette is a fairly gorgeous chamber-pop quartet that transforms the outsider-folksongs of Matt Sheffer into ever softer and sweeter numbers that, otherwise, wouldn’t have had much of a chance to see the light of day. Excepting the last track, these songs were crafted around eschewing standard chord progressions and predictable melodies, focusing instead on more classical movement and contrapuntal interplay between instrumentation and vocals. Which is to say, the album isn’t catchy so much as complex and beautiful.

Side A is FR’s take on these songs and Side B is the original singer-songwriter’s solo jams, which bear notable resemblance to some seriously great Rufus Wainwright material.

 --Jacob An Kittenplan