Cape Dory by Tennis
Couples that move onto a sailboat for a year writing music stay together. Or at the very least they create some light hearted nautical retro-pop. No January release in recent memory has made me crave a tropical vacation more. It’s a really odd niche these guys fill. It’s so specific that by the end of listening to the whole album, it might even ware on you a bit, with some of the lesser tracks just kind of blending together.
We’ll make a family in the quiet country
You and me, in simplicity
That being said Alaina Moore’s voice is super pretty and I wish there were more tracks where it really got to pop out from the rest of the instrumentation like in “Marathon”. “Long Boat Pass” is another stand out that has a very early 60’s girl band type feel. In general, a really enjoyable release that, even if only for 10 tracks, helps you escape winter for a little bit.
Cape Dory: 3.5 out of 5.
Dye it Blonde by Smith Westerns.
Before listening to “Dye it Blonde” I was expecting something a little harder and grittier from the obnoxiously young Chicago garage rockers. But the album was really less like the “Black Lips” and more like a warped, less depressed version of “Girls”. In fact, aside from the “Thin Lizzyesque” guitars that start off “End of the Night”, I’d venture to say that this is more of a pop album than anything. And thats not at all intended to be a knock on the record. The song “Dance Away” is a pretty cool grunge(y), (relatively) lo-fi take on old school brit-pop. The dreamy “Weekend” just sounds like a teenage crush, even without the lyrics, and seems pretty destined for teen rom-com montage usage. Overall, “Dye it Blonde” features plenty of jams and just the right amount of diversity.
Dye it Blonde: 4 out of 5.