In my continuing exercise to rate all the Handsome's studio releases, their fourth album, 2001's In The Air is next up. So far I have given Odessa 4 stars, Milk and Scissors 4 stars and Through The Trees 5 stars.
Through The Trees is not only the Handsome's best album, it is one of the finest albums I've ever heard, so it is a difficult act to follow. So the fact that In The Air falls a bit short is no disgrace because, in my view, precious few albums by anyone have come close to Through The Trees this millennium.
In The Air is fairly similar in style to it's predecessor with its mix of Americana, Country, Bluegrass and Pop and is the album where The Handsome Family cemented their signature sound first laid down on Through The Trees after their more rock infused first couple of albums. It takes a while to get going but when it does with the fourth track, the lovely, string laden A Beautiful Thing, it doesn't let up and reaches another peak with track 11, Lie Down which features wonderful dual guitar work by Brett Sparks. In The Air is a very fine album indeed.