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Dumb Luck [Us Import] [Import]

Dntel Audio CD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: £6.80 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Music

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Photos

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Biography

Los Angeles resident Jimmy Tamborello records, releases and occasionally performs music under the name Dntel. In 2007, we at Sub Pop released the Dntel album Dumb Luck which included contributions from a whole raft of talented people too numerous to list here (a short version of that list would include members of Grizzly Bear, Rilo Kiley, Bright Eyes, and Arthur & Yu). And at the end of ... Read more in Amazon's Dntel Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (24 April 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Sub Pop
  • ASIN: B000NQR7SO
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 663,452 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Dumb Luck
2. To a Fault
3. I'd Like To Know
4. Roll On
5. The Distance
6. Rock My Boat
7. Natural Resources
8. Breakfast In Bed
9. Dreams

Customer Reviews

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3.5 out of 5 stars
3.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
As one half of The Postal Service, with Death Cab For Cutie's Ben Gibbard and on his own as Dntel, Jimmy Tamborello has played quite a part in making electronica accessible to indie kids. 'Dumb Luck', his belated follow-up to 2001's superb 'Life Is Full Of Possibilities') promises more of the same, with a huge array of guest vocalists ranging from indie elite (Conor Oberst, Jenny Lewis) to cult bands (Lali Puna, Grizzly Bear). The album's first half is a masterclass of indietronica, its varied cast of singers pulled together by Dntel's distinctive, fuzzy beats. 'Roll On', Jenny Lewis' contribution, is particularly gorgeous: Lewis' voice is perfect for the song's combination of acoustic guitars and subtle, stuttered beats. A true standout, it's the closest Tamberello comes to matching the wistful electro-pop he perfected on his work with Gibbard.

Sadly, the album's last few tracks are far too forgettable, and the album simply trails off. Each song is pleasant but subdued, and despite efforts from the guest vocalists, they have difficulty maintaining attention. Even his collaboration with Conor Oberst, which worked so well on Bright Eyes' #2 US single 'Take It Easy (Love Nothing)', is a huge disappointment, sounding devoid of Oberst's personality. Perhaps Tamborello should have included more songs like the album's brilliant opening title track, the only track on which he tries his hand at vocals. An epic which sees Tamborello concerned about his new-found fame ("Don't forget that it's dumb luck that brought you here"), it has a personal edge lacking in some of the album's later songs. Though it's a very listenable and frequently impressive album, 'Dumb Luck''s inconsistency gets irritating, and even with its short running time you're unlikely to make it to the finish.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's just dumb luck that... 24 April 2007
By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
Under the name of Dntel, Jimmy Tamborello has taken awhile making the follow-up to "Life is Full of Possibilities." Sometimes I doubted he'd get around to producing one.

But after six years, at last he has -- "Dumb Luck," a wobbling trippy little album, saturated with some of the top indie talents. The opening is rather weak, but the remaining songs are beautifully poignant and beautiful.

It opens with what sounds like a mellotron having a grand mal seizure. Tamborello croons, "Just don't forget/that it's dumb luck/that got you here/don't fool yourself/cause misfortune's waiting/for the best time to appear.... And no one remembers even one word that left your mouth/All the melodies were stolen from the songs by someone else..."

After it's liquefied your eardrums, the music thankfully smooths out into a sweeping Sigur-Rosian trip-epic, and switches again into a folky little tune augmented with snowy synth. And Tamborello continues ominously singing of the lack of creativity, soul and talent of his subject. All I could think of was certain MTV stars.

The songs that follow are more even -- trippling psychfolk, delicate windy blip-ballads, country songs over a layer of buzzing synth, jangling little ballads, trip-brass and soulful chorales, blurry rockers, and finally an exquisitely ethereal little ballad.

And the list of collaborators reads like an indie who's-who: Conor Oberst, Fog, Jenny Lewis, Grizzly Bear, the Mystic Chords of Memory, Lali Puna and Mia Doi Todd. All these are brilliantly and almost seamlessly made, except for "The Distance" with Arthur & Yu -- too jangly at times, but still listenable.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Blurs the line that separates Dntel from Jimmy Tamborello's other projects. 9 April 2007
By Cale E. Reneau - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
It has been six years since Dntel last released a full-length album. Since that time, Jimmy Tamborello has undergone quite a transformation; from underground electro programmer to full-fledged indie pop god. Whether he was busy being one half of the uber-successful The Postal Service or putting out albums as James Figurine, Tamborello has found countless ways to stay busy. "Dumb Luck," the long-awaited follow up to 2001's "Life Is Full of Possibilities," sounds like an expected mixture of everything that Tamborello has accomplished over the last six years. In doing so, it largely abandons the sound that separated Dntel from Tamborello's numerous other projects.

The lead-off and title track, "Dumb Luck" features Tamborello's stylistically unflattering voice offering tidbits of self-pity such as, "Don't forget that it's dumb luck that got you here" or "you can't trust your friends, they will betray you." The song begins with the largely disjointed flutterings of Jimmy's production, but eventually collapses into a simple acoustic guitar with minimal electronic effects in the background. It is a decent song, but like most songs sung by Tamborello (i.e. James Figurine's 2006 album), the production value far outweighs the vocal performance.

In many ways, it feels as if "Dumb Luck" is less of a Dntel album and more of a "Jimmy Tamborello featuring All of His Friends" album. Aside from the title track, every song is sung by a guest performer. Some of these tracks work rather well, while others feel stale and generally unmemorable.

"To a Fault" featuring Grizzly Bear, for example, is a rater awesome track. Here, it actually sounds like a Dntel song should sound like, with minimal emphasis placed on vocals and more on everything else. As such, most of the song is comprised of evidence of Tamborello's unwavering skills as a producer/programmer and it stands out as one of the better songs on the album. On the contrary, "Roll On" is dominated by Jenny Lewis' trademark quasi-country voice and as a result the song sounds absolutely nothing like any other Dntel song to date. Like so many other songs on the album, it features the standard "verse/chorus/verse/chorus" setup. Tamborello's skills are entirely subdued here, and one has to wonder what even classifies this as Dntel and not James Figurine or The Postal Service (aside from the fact that that's what Tamborello says it is).

"Rock My Boat" featuring Mia Doi Todd, is a pretty good song that does a fantastic job of balancing the talents of both artists. Even if it's a bit clichéd to hear an artist sing, "You rock my boat," Mia Doi Todd does a fantastic job of complementing Tamborello's stellar song. Similarly, Andrew Broder offers up the best vocal performance of the album on "Natural Resources." At it's best moments, the song sounds like it could have been pulled right off of Radiohead's Kid A.

Arguably, the most notable vocalist on the album is Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes on "Breakfast In Bed." However, Oberst tones down his trademark emotionally wrought vocals and presents a completely uninspired melody, sounding almost exactly like another one of his songs, "Kathy With a Ks Song" (without the aforementioned emotion). Though his emotionally-vacant vocals actually blend rather well with Tamborello's song, one can't help be disappointed by their absence.

Overall, Dntel's "Dumb Luck" should satisfy any fan of The Postal Service or James Figurine. However, Dntel fans who were expecting a revival of the artist's unrivaled sound from previous albums might be a little disappointed. Personally, though I enjoy this album a lot, I can't help but feel a bit cheated. I am a huge Dntel fan, and this album offers nothing that would even suggest that this is the same Tamborello moniker. If the artist insists on using multiple monikers to promote his music, he should do a better job of defining each one. "Dumb Luck," though good, sounds absolutely nothing previous Dntel albums, and more like everything else Tamborello has done in recent years...for better or for worse.

Recommended for fans of The Postal Service, James Figurine, or any of the artists who lend their vocals to this album.

Key Tracks:

1. "To A Fault (featuring Grizzly Bear)"

2. "I'd Like to Know (featuring Lali Puna)"

3. "Rock My Boat (featuring Mia Doi Todd)"

4. "Natural Resources (featuring Andrew Broder of Fog)"

6 out of 10 Stars
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Genius 1 Nov 2007
By Alex Leone - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Jimmy Tamborello is one of my favorite electronic musicians. His new CD "Dumb Luck" is a quite a departure from "Life is Full of Possibilities." The CD is an amazing mix of Electronic and Acoustic music. It blends Jimmy's electronic style well with the guitars and vocals provided by his guests. He is one of the best around, and highly under-appreciated. His work is totally original, and always fresh and new and inspiring. I give this 5/5 stars.
4.0 out of 5 stars Only dumb luck 24 April 2007
By E. A Solinas - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Under the name of Dntel, Jimmy Tamborello has taken awhile making the follow-up to "Life is Full of Possibilities." Sometimes I doubted he'd get around to producing one.

But after six years, at last he has -- "Dumb Luck," a wobbling trippy little album, saturated with some of the top indie talents. The opening is rather weak, but the remaining songs are beautifully poignant and beautiful.

It opens with what sounds like a mellotron having a grand mal seizure. Tamborello croons, "Just don't forget/that it's dumb luck/that got you here/don't fool yourself/cause misfortune's waiting/for the best time to appear.... And no one remembers even one word that left your mouth/All the melodies were stolen from the songs by someone else..."

After it's liquefied your eardrums, the music thankfully smooths out into a sweeping Sigur-Rosian trip-epic, and switches again into a folky little tune augmented with snowy synth. And Tamborello continues ominously singing of the lack of creativity, soul and talent of his subject. All I could think of was certain MTV stars.

The songs that follow are more even -- trippling psychfolk, delicate windy blip-ballads, country songs over a layer of buzzing synth, jangling little ballads, trip-brass and soulful chorales, blurry rockers, and finally an exquisitely ethereal little ballad.

And the list of collaborators reads like an indie who's-who: Conor Oberst, Fog, Jenny Lewis, Grizzly Bear, the Mystic Chords of Memory, Lali Puna and Mia Doi Todd. All these are brilliantly and almost seamlessly made, except for "The Distance" with Arthur & Yu -- too jangly at times, but still listenable.

Tamborello weaves together these various styles with his own instrumentation -- there's some ringing electric guitars, softer acoustic ones, glitches, trombones and eerie sound effects. These are all wrapped in Tamborello's trembling synth, mellow tones and airy expansive sweeps of sound. Occasionally, he doesn't even contribute much, just pretties the edges of the melody.

The vocals are also quite nice -- none of them really match, but they match the music. Tamborello's is smooth and thoughtful, while some other highlights include Todd's soulful ballad, Daniel Rossen's folky warbling, and Oberst's quirky solo. The Mystic Chords and Lali Puna offer shifting, ethereal murmurs instead of solid vocals.

The main flaw? The collaborations dominate the entire album, and at times I found myself wishing for a pure Dntel song, without the influence of another band.

Dntel's second album is quite different from the first, especially with the cornucopia of guest collaborators. But "Dumb Luck" belies the message of the first song.
4.0 out of 5 stars Shocking album - very strange 15 May 2007
By Justin D. Parker - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
As a huge fan of Dntel's other work, especially Life is Full of Possibilities, I about freaked out when I saw that a new album was out. It's taken me awhile to get an opinion on it.

At first, the lyrics kind of get in the way. It seemed too much of a vocal "hipster indie" album and that really pissed me off at first. However, I have tried really hard to get into this album because I just cannot give up on this guy. I've found that I actually really like this album, but for totally different reasons that I like the previous ones.

The melodic nature of this album still gets in the way at times, as I've always been more intrigued by his sampling/sequencing. This album, electronically, is phenominal. This guy thinks of stuff that is just mind boggling.

A lot of the vocalists I'm not crazy about (track #4) but to be able to pull this kind of stuff off - melodic vocals and guitar work along with the glitch, is actually pretty refreshing to hear and that's where I learned to love this album.

My favorite track is #6 - Rock my Boat, followed by #2, To a Fault. I'd say this because the vocals in these songs are more interesting/flow well with the concept of the album.

If anyone is just getting into this type of stuff and are more interested in the electronic aspect rather than the vocal indie-ness, I recommend checking out Lusine's "Iron City" or "Serial Hodgepodge", Mum's "Yesterday was Dramatic, Today is OK", or Fennesz's album "Venice" which actually has a really cool vocal track by David Sylvian. Check it out.
3.0 out of 5 stars 3 1/2 Starts for effort, but Dntel hasn't hit the high note. 29 April 2007
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I pre-ordered this album after listening to the "Dumb Luck" track. Thinking that the pure beauty of his voice and music was going to be throughout the album was abruptly interrupted by various artists that through me off from what I thought would have been a great album. In Dntel's first album "Life is Full of Possibilities", it was lacking vocal and direction, making that album sound mostly like background noise and incomplete tracks.

Now with the album, Dntel has invited various artists to join in this album which in my opinion kills this album and Dntels true image. Songs like "Roll on" shocked me to listen to since I don't see how a "country" sounded song fits in with Dntels image.

Personally, I found some songs enjoyable, but for the most part, Dntel needs to be SOLO with his work, including vocals. Dntel fans, listen the album first before
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