Prefixmag.com | 7.5 | Rusty String Deluxe
Filepp seamlessly mixes layers of noise and distortion over melodies and vocals.
Pensatos.com | 3 out of 5 | Rusty String Deluxe
...He sings in a voice that sounds honest and exhausted...The drum programming is reminiscent of the skittering beats of Björk’s Vespertine: quietly popping like a dying fire, somehow halfway detached from the rest of the music—hip-hop rhythm as it might spontaneously appear in intergalactic radio static.
Popmatters.com | 8.0 | Rusty String
Rusty String is a triumphant experiment into what can be donewhen art and technology intertwine, and there is an undeniable joy in seeing the album veer from thumping beats and breakdowns to acoustic plucking and glockenspiels. Regardless of its foundation, it is a delightfully inventive album of fantastic melody and ingenuity that should be commended as much for its songwriting as it should its experimentation.
It's the Money Shot | 2AM
...There's a sort of peacefulness to it, paired with a chaotic element that mirrors my mind's unruly creative process.
Fangbear.com | Rusty String
...Rusty String drifts from atonal to downright pretty, with nimble alacrity. Filepp's vocals brood over brilliantly broken orchestral movements and righteous downtempo breaks.
Donnybrook Writing Academy | Rusty String Deluxe
Filepp picks up the lo-fi folktronica where Roommate’s Songs the Animals Taught Us left off, and sounds the call for introverts everywhere to return promptly to their rooms.
Music and Notes | Consumer Confidence Vol. 1
Cars & Trains is a glorious, intricate mess of contradictions.
thefmly | The Roots, The Leaves
"...every tune is a keeper."
QRO Mag | 7 out of 10 | The Roots, The Leaves
"...the lyrics on the roots, the leaves are a thing of beauty."
Altsounds | The Roots, The Remix
"The thirteen remixers ... lend their take on cars & trains' deft instrumentalism and finely crafted songwriting."
The Oregonian | 7.0 out of 10 | The Roots, The Leaves
" ... a stirring album."
(Up & Coming) "Cars & Trains, the stage alias of Portland musician Tom Filepp, is a pretty textbook example of what some folks (regrettably) refer to as "indietronica": indie-rock songs dressed up with dainty electronic touches, or laptop jams fleshed out with acoustic instrumentation—too often this stuff is an excuse for beautiful but boring texturalism (hey, Album Leaf) or inane elfin tinkering (looking at you, Múm). Cars & Trains strikes a good balance, though—his arrangements (plucked strings, wheezing melodica, tinkling glockenspiel, stuttering little beats and scrapes and shudders) are pretty without being too precious, and his songwriting, which has something of Why?'s glum mumble to it, is strong enough to stand on its own, no matter how it's dressed up." ERIC GRANDY
"... the melancholyelectronica of Tom Filepp has more than its share of merit. His catalog of albums and EPs, reaching back to 2006, comfortably straddles the gap between folk and dance, at points resembling Castanets or the slower leanings of Broken Social Scene."
The Portland Mercury | The Roots, The Leaves
"...We'll wait until lone member Tom Filepp has a proper release show next month before we hoist our Best New Music 2010 banner, but let's just say that his dizzying mix of bedroom hiphop and subtle electronics (don't forget the elements of folk music as well) has been a listening staple over these early winter weeks.."
Brute-iful | The Roots, The Leaves
"...a quiet and restful play on electronic production, an attic-imagination fantasy of acoustic strings, skipping music box tunes, often healthy basslines and thoughtful lyricism."
popwreckoning | The Roots, The Leaves
"...a delightfully melancholy mix of organic and inorganic sounds that are perfectly morose and straightforward. With folk vibes, these urban lullabies provide dark landscapes for the almost brooding handpicked lyrics that are precise and exact, and paired together, make one heck of an album."
CMJ | The Roots, The Leaves
"...a beautifully convoluted sound forged from the combination of the natural and the unnatural. It's an investigation into the fabricated and the brutally honest...The Roots, The Leaves gives listeners melancholy without creating its music around it. It doesn't feel like the lyrics were written for the melodies or vice versa, but that they, instead, always arrive together, fully formed."
Portland Mercury (feature) | The Roots, The Leaves
"Part of the initial appeal of Filepp's music is how the mangled framework of hiphop is incorporated into the hushed tones of his voice and restrained instrumental backing."