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California Atmosphere and the Light of the Sun

Fans of the cult Nickelodeon TV show The Adventures of Pete & Pete probably remember the show's hypnotic theme song "Hey Sandy," by the indie-pop band Polaris. It was the kind of song that induces humming randomly and ceaselessly, and Cass McCombs' "Morning Shadows," with its soft acoustic guitars and hazily romantic vocals, seems to take its cue from both "Hey Sandy" and the gentle likes of Toad the Wet Sprocket.

"Morning Shadows" is a clear highlight of the California-born McCombs' new album Dropping the Writ. His first two discs were recorded in New York City and Baltimore, but this one feels rooted firmly in Southern California, where it was written and recorded. Appropriately, warmth and laid-back atmosphere pervade every moment of "Morning Shadows" — it's equal parts meditation and sunshine.

Listen to yesterday's 'Song of the Day.'

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Lily Percy