Friday, 21 October 2011
I've been meaning to review this one for quite a while but it felt too summery and this is a debut album you should really only listen to when it's dark outside..
Hailing from Santa Barbara, California, Gardens & Villa got their name from their house on Villa Street, where they often got stuck in to a bit of gardening (the modern man knows no limits!).
I often imagine most bands from CA to be a bit like the beach boys, full of poppy melodies that are instantly gratifying and catchy. Not so though with this four piece, who whilst retaining choruses that are darn memorable, are built by intricacy, melancholy, disco and take influence from the likes of Talking Heads and importantly, indie rock.
With a languid boogie groove meeting a casio beat, the opening of Orange Blossom is one of the best you're likely to hear, whereas Chemtrails is another slow mover, punctuated with echoing tamborines, a tinkly piano and Chris Lynch's tenor vocals leading a reflective verse. Flipping on it's head three and half minutes in, Lynch finishes the line Dandylions Flying High... and drops uhooo uhoo uhoo' most satisfyingly. A well constructed song and as infectious as they come.
The album draws to a close on another highlight in Neon Dove as finger picking guitars intertwine with bossa beats, the band again choosing the right moments to drop out the instruments to focus on the core of synths and those sweetend vocals.
A perfect post 9pm album to segue Autumn nights into Winter
You can check out my other top albums of the year (so far) on Spotify here
Gardens & Villa - Chemtrails by electricsoundofjoy