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Saturday, January 24, 2009

Pete & The Pirates : Little Death

It's a snow-covered, bleak, cold Saturday here in Michigan. We haven't seen the sun in several days, maybe even weeks until just moments ago when the sun made an appearance through the clouds. We're not sure when the last appearance was. All we're sure of is that the warm days of spring seem to be so far off, we can barely comprehend that something so wonderful can exist here.

Sanity is one of those things that is sometimes difficult to capture and hold during the dead of winter in the north country. Some achieve this noble goal through heat lamps and tanning beds. Some shackle their sanity in winter hobbies and sports. Some just let it go; this is my explanation for all the horrible winter drivers. Some, like this humble writer, find the feeling of warm summer sand between their toes in certain records.

I've been a long time enthusiast of British neo-retro rock. The Brits are masters of taking something old, worn, mostly-cliched, but still loved and turning it into something wonderfully fresh and tasty. Pete and The Pirates are no exception to this statement.

This record pulls elements of almost every major genre of popular music from the past 40 years, blends it seamlessly with a heavy late 60's pop sensibility and masterful songwriting in a package that is not over-produced, well-arranged, and just fun to listen to.

Even the non-upbeat tracks on the album remind me of warmer days and sunshine. The lyrics portray their message very well without being obvious. Most of the tracks are songs of longing and perhaps that's what speaks to me about the days of green grass and warm southerly breezes.

The band is a group that is very good at making music together, but each is not particularly talented in their own right. Musically, the record is not challenging, but the emotion of music is compelling and drives one to continue listening. Throughout, the record is a collection of listenable pop tunes with very little if any filler.

British pop is always a good remedy for the dark days of winter. Pete and Pirates succeed magnificently at re-creating the warmth of summer for those of us trapped in the alpine north country.

A solid 4 out of 5 stars.

1 comment:

  1. Great review! I definitely am going to have to have a listen to this one. You sold me when you said how it pulls elements from every major genre of pop music from the past 40 years... can't wait.