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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Mark’s Pick of The Week: Europe by Allo Darlin’

           The problem with a phenomenal album is it makes me want look for more phenomenal music in the same genre.  I don’t know if this is a personal idiosyncrasy, but most of the time this fervent search for similar music normally end without finding what I’m looking for.  It’s tough because, first off, I’m setting the bar really damn high, so the chance of finding something even comparable is a little miracle.  After listening to “If You’re Feeling Sinister” a few times a few nights ago all I wanted was smart, fun indie-pop.  What I found was this, and well…I’m not complaining. 
            “Europe” is the sophomore album from London Twee-poppers Allo Darlin’.  Right away this album fulfills my first prerequisite of a pop album: it is very fun.  Every track has me tapping my foot or bobbing my head almost compulsively.  There’s nothing like it when a song seems to change the rhythm of the entire room, and pretty soon everything is dancing with you.
            The arrangements are brilliant as well.  The presence of the ukulele is just the right level of cute, and allows for some great crescendos when the rest of the band comes in.  Other then that it’s basically splashy drums, pointy guitar, and springy bass.  Elizabeth Morris’ vocals are the icing on the cake.  Her delivery is spot on, and the lyrics so naturally dip between similes, hyperboles, stories, and statements.  She just makes it look (sound) so easy.  Several of the tracks have lyrics that I would say are phenomenal in their own right.             
Another great thing about this album is consistency.  All the tracks are basically the same length, but some feel like short bursts while others are slow burners.  The songwriting seems to excel in both respects showing these guys can write something quick and fun as easily as they can write something that simmers a bit slower.
            When you get down to it Europe is 10 really solid tracks for those of you who can’t get enough of this stuff.  Keep up these guys on facebook, website and bandcamp where you can purchase the plethora of recording they’ve done including their brand new cover album that features Springsteen and AC/DC tracks among others.

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