Sage Francis, Li(f)e
Sage Francis’ fourth solo album finds him collaborating with Chicago indie-rock band Califone. The resulting songs, most of which address hypocrisy (or “lie”) in modern society, wed Francis’ densely lyrical rap style with complex textural instrumentation. Francis has never been known for hook-laden hits or catchy punchlines, and Li(f)e is no exception. It has plenty of deft meditations, though, including prodigal son anthems like “Little Houdini” and “The Baby Stays.” Like chapters in a book, they add up to a greater, meaningful whole.