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 V.19 No.22 | June 3 - 9, 2010 

Sonic Reducer

The Love Language Libraries (Merge Records)

The second release from North Carolina’s The Love Language sounds like lo-fi, effects-laden ’60s pop guided by crooning vocals. Many of the songs embody bubblegumish whimsy with an underlying creepiness—on “Horophones,” Stuart McLamb sweetly sings, “If all good children go to heaven then all good children die.” Meanwhile, other songs are mere acoustic ballads that eventually sweep into compositions of shoegaze proportion. If you only pick one track to download (because CDs are old hat, right?), go for the upbeat melancholy of “Brittany’s Back.” (JCC)

Sugar & Gold Get Wet! (Antenna Farm Records)

[ MP3 Preview ]

San Francisco’s Sugar & Gold gives us a sequel to 2007’s Crème. Touted as pop, it’s more adequately described as disco-edged dance music—think Hot Chip. Get Wet! also has a heavy ’80s new wave thread running through it. Songs like “It’s All Over You” and “Bodyaches,” with their cascades of synth, wouldn’t be out of place at a Depeche Mode-themed party. Most of the lyrics are about dancing, hooking up or some variation on those themes. Get your sexy, kinda-cheesy groove on live: Sugar & Gold plays the Launchpad on Tuesday, June 8. (SO)

Pete Francis The Movie We Are In (Scrapper Records)

[ MP3 Preview ]

The latest solo album from Pete Francis (formerly of the funk/roots/folk band Dispatch) is a mild bite for a mainstream palate. In abandoning his largely self-produced sound and teaming up with a producer who slicked up his songs, Francis has lost any funky he had. Instead of hints of Bob Dylan and bluegrass, his music now has dollops of John Mayer. In trying to polish his production and mix several styles, Francis has created an album that’s not very interesting. (SO)

(JCC) Jessica Cassyle Carr, (SO) Summer Olsson

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