Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Weird Dreams - Choreography (Tough Love, 2012)


Weird Dreams are proof that a new era of pop aesthetics has risen. Music aside, pop has typically paraded photogenic bandmates primed for interviews to provide giggle-worthy tour stories. Weird Dreams, notwithstanding an official website and pages on social media platforms, give meager background on themselves. Though the internet-anonymity stunt has been pulled before by WU LYF and Black Moth Super Rainbow, it's peculiar to see a band with music as user-friendly as this debut lightly veil their personalities behind an evasive (albeit ambiguous) name in this time of constant internet reliance. Why shouldn't they?

Part of what little the band expounds is its influences, citing the Beach Boys and David Lynch. The two have very faint inspiration to Choreography, but they do encapsulate its surrealist pop air. The benevolent songwriting of Brian Wilson and groups associated with his producer compeer Phil Spectre are modernized with touches of mid-'80s shoegaze and mildly psychedelic indie pop a la Oh, Inverted World-era Shins. David Lynch's musical genre-hopping debut Crazy Clown Time is imperceptible, but his early films' otherworldliness is within reach.

The bubbly acoustic guitar line opening "Vague Hotel" seeps into the 4AD tinge that pervades Choreography. Though somewhat disconnected from its verses, the chorus's vocal melody elegantly oozes allure onto gliding drums and a sedate surf lick. "Hurt So Bad" is a slice of clear-cut Slumberland referencing with easygoing hooks galore, displaying Weird Dreams' dependable yet flexible spirit. Dueling leads permeate "Faceless" alongside a spryly grooving bass, leaning toward their more rocking tendencies. "Little Girl" is a tender waltz swaying equidistant from its '60s forerunners, whereas the militaristic accent of "666.66" eases into its uplifting hook effortlessly, boasting rich harmonies and webs of guitar.

No matter the route taken, Weird Dreams embark upon melodious exploits. Each tune is as pleasant as the next, in spite of its small use of eerie titles. There are plenty of coexisting acts, however, that do a similar dance-- Dunes, Big Troubles, Deerhunter-- but rather than being upstaged by them, Weird Dreams have climbed onto just as high of a pedestal. The chorus-fed guitars and saccharine vocals may overwhelm some at a 47-minute length, but Choreography is sure to pander to listeners with an insatiable pop affinity.



[Weird Dreams Website]
[Buy Choreography from Tough Love Records]

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