Sunday, January 7, 2007

Band Of The Week: Let's Go Sailing

I've made a valiant effort to go out less, stay in more for 2007. No, this is not a new year's resolution. I won't give it that kind of label. Instead it's just an idea, an attempt...we'll see how long it stays. Regardless, after coming back from Philly and being completely exhausted, I took an early night and woke up invigorated. Not only did I clean my entire apartment, but I decided it was time to tackle that ever-growing pile of cds that I receive in the mail. Look for many new band posts in the coming weeks, but I must immediately point you towards the best I've heard so far: Let's Go Sailing.

JAX has been talking about this band for sometime now. I should pay more attention. Hailing from LA, the band is headed by Shana Levy (previously of the band Irving) who brought a bunch of songs to four friends in hopes of recording a demo. They teamed up with Chris Chandler (Flaming Lips) and Rod Cervera (Rentals/Weezer) and finished a collection, but that wasn't enough. Levy worked on her own to produce a full-length debut, the impressive The Chaos In Order.

I listened to the album while cleaning my apartment but had to put down the vacuum cleaner to really give it the attention it deserves. Shana's dreamlike vocals combined with sweet indie pop would make this album an enjoyable listen, but far from rare. You can point out a million albums that are warranted of that description. But what sets Let's Go Sailing apart is that sound, combined with thoughtful, simple lyrics.

It's become more rare these days to find impressive lyricists, and (although I hate to say it) much harder with female vocalists. Very few can sound sincere. Even fewer can match music and words in a way that is unexpected and brilliant. Off the top of my head, I can only think of The Boy Least Likely To and Rilo Kiley who have been able to do this successfully in contemporary music.

For example: you take a song like "Icicles" which is painfully sweet in sound, with Shana oohing and cooing her way around the playful accompaniment. And then I almost gasped when she says "Truth be told, I'm better off dead," without a skip or hesitation in her voice. It's that lack of fear and a mischievousness in Shana that helps her personality shine through the music. And even when she says "all I want from you is love" in the song by the same name, when she sings that one line over a bouncing piano...you can't help but believe her.

The Chaos In Order is an incredible listen from beginning to end, the kind of easy listening indie pop that you know I love with a sophisticated execution. I highly recommend you pick up this debut by Let's Go Sailing and to do so you can clickity click right here. (Oh and PS - their shirts are adorable as well)

  • Let's Go Sailing - Icicles
  • Let's Go Sailing - All I Want From You Is Love
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