It’s hard to do service to an acoustic singer songwriter’s sound. To clarify: it’s hard to do so using these strange little shapes we call “words.” Yeah, words suck. Unlike larger bands, whose superior membership allows a deeper (not better, just more diverse) sound, an acoustic singer songwriter has only his voice and guitar to express himself. This sonic “limitation” means two things. First, due to the nuanced palette of a acoustic guitar/voice combination, it’s difficult to avoid the lazy pastime of comparing them to other artists. “He sounds a lot like Elliott Smith and Ben Gibbard.” Second, the verbiage available for acoustic artists is limited to a pithy and hackneyed wordbank: “Mellow.” “Minor-key hooks.” “A fragile, plaintive voice.” “Stark.” These words could describe thousands of singer-songwriters who sound nothing alike, but whose sound would technically fall under those homogenizing descriptors. If the appeal of an acoustic performer is the honesty of his expression, the mood he creates, or the acuity of his lyrical ideas, how can I, as a monkey who has developed specific musical fetishes, possibly communicate to another person how an album sounds or feels without falling prey to the pitfalls of self-indulgence? I already have.