By Eve Marcellus
:kinema:is a three piece pop band from England who released their breezy, stylish, and slightly forgettable self-titled album in July. In their own words, they make their music by “combining elements of Yacht Rock, Soul and Contemporary Pop and Dance music into something sounding like Off The Wall-era Micheal Jackson being re-imagined by a 21st Century Indie band.” Despite the fact that nothing about their music comes close to disco greatness, it isn’t an unpleasant listen. The songs do recall other dance and R&B hits, such as The Real McCoy and Robin Thicke’s debut (back when he just went by Thicke). It is retro in a 90s way. There is clearly a knowledge and respect for what makes good dance music, and all the elements are there. It fails, however, to come accross as fresh or exciting enough to leave much of an impression. And yes, it seems that they are indeed serious about those colons.
Sounds Like: Soundtrack from “A Night at the Roxbury”, unfortunately.
Listen To: Circles, Let’s Get To It
Reservoir, the debut album from London based group, Fanfarlo, is full of good things. Horns! Bells! Harmonies! Handclaps! The five piece band manages to pay homage to early 60s rock (think The Byrds), particularly on songs like “I’m a Pilot,” while keeping things fresh. If the single “The Walls are Coming Down” sounds a bit familiar, it’s probably because the combination of vocals and an extensive instrumental backing is quite reminiscent of “Postcards from Italy” by Beirut. If one listened to only that song, it would be tempting to dismiss them as a sub-par knock off. However, the album is a cheerful and almost cozy listen. It’s cute music, like flannel shirts in Autumn. This is not the groundbreaking pop album of the year, but one you should have.
The band just wrapped up their US tour (unfortunately) with a stop in San Francisco (at 330 Ritch).
Sounds Like: If Sufjan Stevens’ label released a British act
Listen To: The Walls are Coming Down, Harold T Wilkins