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January 27 street date. "Smalltown Stardust" is a spiritual, tender and ultimately joyous record that might come as a shock to those with only a passing knowledge of King Tuff's back catalog.
On "Smalltown Stardust", Kyle Thomas takes us on his journey to a place where past and present collide, where he can be a dreamer in love with all that he sees. References to his Brattleboro upbringing abound, but at the core of the album is Thomas's desire to commune with nature on a spiritual level. While so much of "Smalltown Stardust" invokes idealized traces and places of Thomas's past, the album's recording process made his communal vision a reality. Thomas's Los Angeles home in 2020 formed a micro-scene of sorts, with housemates Meg Duy (Hand Habits) and Sasami Ashworth recording their own heralded albums at the same time.
Ashworth's contributions are vital to the album: she co-wrote a majority of the record and contributed vocals, arrangements, and instrumentation to each song. In the end, "Smalltown Stardust" is not merely a nostalgia trip. Thomas not only conjured a special time in his life, he found new inspiration, surrounded by collaborators and a sense of love and wonder for nature.