Monday, December 10, 2007

"You make me want to measure stars in the backyard with a calculator and a ruler"

I became absolutely smitten with this band after hearing the very line that serves as the title for this entry. Least one forgets, once upon a time I did DJ a twee pop show at 1190, so it should not be surprising that I'd fall so hard for such a silly sentiment. Au Revoir Simone sometimes seems overwhelmingly catered to the nonsensical things that can win me over. I like, pretty music, especially sung by bookish looking girls and I love pop music with keyboards, organs and synthesizers. Additionally, the trio formed just as I was putting further Brooklyn aspirations behind me to come back to Colorado and I think I spent a great deal of time building it up, greatly anticipating recorded material after hearing about them.

The Bird of Music is their second album and of all the albums I've fallen for this year, this one has admittedly been the hardest sell to friends. Early adopters of their self-released first album miss the thrift-shop appeal of the debut while others are either filled with anti-Casio sentiments or are appalled that any band would sound like a less sophisticated version of their beloved Stereolab. Apparently I was, at least in my small circle, alone in being swept away by the genuine sweetness of such a doe-eyed delivery of love-songs. Though naturally I was also accused, as a lovelorn and very single pop music fan, of being drawn to the angelic voices of the mythical Sirens regardless of substance.

Initially I conceded that Au Revoir Simone's music is simplistic sounding and some aspects are imperfect. I'm simultaneously endeared to and nonplussed about vocals that sometimes sound android-ish. I, however, eventually turned to making my case by calling upon one of my all-time favorite bands: Young Marble Giants. They made minimal instrumentation, deceptively naive lyrics and untrained vocals into something wonderful. Basically, less can be more when it is done exceptionally well. And to make sure I give the appropriate accreditation for this realization, it was after listening to the trio's even more bare-bones session with the always wonderful Daytrotter that I thought to make the comparison. I'll also glibly add that indierockers some day need to get off their never-ending need for mopey-ness and occasionally partake in something so delightful and laid-back.

Here at year's end I've inserted the album into my top ten of 2007, not in spite of mixed reviews, but because I can see myself going back to this one and using it for mix cds for some time. Give this one a try.

Au Revoir Simone- download "Stars"

visit the band
buy the album


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