Album review: 'Stop Thinking,' by Lindsay Mac

Patrick Varine

Lindsay Mac's sophomore album, "Stop Thinking," doesn't really sound like much of anything going on in pop music right now. The primary reason for this is that her main instrument is a cello ... which she plays like a guitar.

A classically trained musician, Mac's sound is a bouncy, poppy brand of energetic propulsion, with the tinny strumming of an acoustic guitar replaced by the much fuller-sounding plucks of her cello, which is accompanied by guitar and bass players Jason Petrin and Stephen Webber, plus a host of guest instrumentalists playing everything from bass clarinet to a turntable.

And while her arrangements and occasionally snarky lyricism definitely call to mind Ani DiFranco, Mac's tunes also seem to have bit of Dixie-Chickish buoyancy, from her cello cover of the Beatles' "Blackbird" to the rag-timey feel of the meter-shifting suite "Cry, Cry, Cry."

Mac knows how to tell a good story, as well, evidenced by tales of former lovers looking back ("Does She"), a muddled head of prescription medication (the title track, which opens the album) and slowly-floating metaphorical love ("Peppercorn").

There isn't much to dance to on "Stop Thinking," but there's plenty to like. Mac is a serious talent, and with the cello-as-guitar market cornered, she's got a niche carved out and big things ahead.

For more on Mac, visit her Web site. Hear samples from "Stop Thinking" at Amazon.com.

Sussex Countian