Upon initial listen, this came across as the kind of sloppy folk punk that I’d likely be annoyed by if there was a male singer. Call me sexist if you will but the fact that a female is doing the vocals makes this totally pleasurable, whereas I’d normally dismiss such stuff after one listen as gimmicky coffee shop music that guys play around campfires, hoping to lure girls back to their van/tent/dirty sleeping bag by the river etc. Instead it’s grown on me completely – I keep finding myself going back to this one…even when I’m not burned-out on hip-hop and crust punk. I guess I just like it because it’s good music.
Based in Boulder, CO, the band is made up of two people: Ali Tadayon plays guitar, while Maggie McCarthy does vocals and plays banjo and accordion. This album features help from Robin Walker on percussion and Katie Conrad on viola and harmonica. It’s an easy copout to rely on comparisons, but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the Moldy Peaches / Kimya Dawson-ness of this.
Most of the lyrics are lighthearted, goofy celebrations of youthful exuberance and life’s simpler pleasures, like backpacking beers, riding bikes and making out. It makes me smile to hear them firing a few harmless shots at Portland, OR in the songs “Mustache” and “No Parents.” Take for example the following line from the later: “Portland is fine if you like nice beer and vegans wearing leather - and smoking in some parking lot - and complaining about the weather.” I also like this one from “Loser”: “I am a tobacco user and an alcohol abuser. If these things make me a loser, then I guess my friends are too.” Pretty damn simple - pretty damn great.
8.0 / 10
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