Athens' Jacob Morris has collaborated with a range of artists—from Patterson Hood to Elephant 6 bands and Vic Chesnutt—contributing his fine cello work along with guitar, bass, and keyboards. His debut is a sophisticated, light-footed folk-pop outing that glistens with atmospheric keyboards and quirky organ, acoustic guitar, woodwinds, and Morris' gentle, lonesome vocals. There are hints of everything from the restrained joy of the Dead's "Sugar Magnolia" to the romantic, rainy-day vibe of Van Morrison's Astral Weeks here, with cascading, spare acoustic strumming atop waltzing cellos, brushed snares, and gentle fingerpicking ("Lost Twilight" feels like a distant cousin of Morrison's "Sweet Thing"). Dashes of alt-country ("Dusty"), '70s AM radio mellowness ("Glass"), and dark, aching Americana ("Spider") reflect Morris' musical pallet. The buoyant, melodic swing of "Sidewind"—a sweet, pining number with shakers shimmying and playfully nudging cello and guitar along—should appeal to fans of Wilco, The Avett Brothers, or even Tom Petty and Bob Dylan. Moths is a wonderful, solid debut.

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