2. Heavy Earth
Made up of various members of Maps & Atlases, Suns, Joan of Arc and Gypsy Blood, Wedding Dress are about as Chicago as it gets. Dreamt up as side-project/outlet for Maps & Atlases guitar player Erin Elders, songs were written between tours and slowly released during his "math-pop" band's fleeting downtime. Wedding Dress is a distinctly other affair — it's more layered, plaintive and measured than anything in Elders' previous catalog. The songs are textured narratives. The instrumentation
is restrained and, in many ways, the project stands as a perfect counter-point to the sometimes spastic Maps. That's not to say its a dull affair. The songs are beautiful in their sparseness, the palate is selectively lush, and the rotating set of players — both recorded and live — patiently flesh out Elders' haunting vocals and evocative lyrics.