Throw Me the Statue | Moonbeams (Secretely Canadian)

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cd_throw-me-the-statue.jpgA good portion of Moonbeams shies away from the playful Boy Least Likely To elements, and instead embraces, especially vocally, a Casiotone for the Painfully Alone or Robot Ate Me feel.

 

 

 

 

Secretly Canadian's newest acquisition, Throw Me the Statue, joins the thriving Seattle indie-pop scene—aided by Casey Foubert (Sufjan, Pedro the Lion)—and draws impressive comparisons to Magnetic Fields, Peter Bjorn and John, and Aqueduct; all with only one EP to their strange name. TMTS is currently gearing up for some local Washington shows in preparation for their SXSW showcase, by which time their debut album Moonbeams will have dropped.

When sifting through the impressive 13-track-yet-still-lacking Moonbeams, three tracks standout and reveal a promising future. First single "Lolita" (not a cover of Frank Black's 2007 gem) is the best, the most fun, and the most indicative of the band's character. The first 20 seconds feature a sophisticated musical arrangement between a glockenspiel and a programmed toy-drum machine that comes to a complete stop before resuming with handclaps. The voice melody, rhyme scheme, and lyrical content don't get any more grown up: the songs opens "Lolita/ I gotta see ya," and flows to lyrics of "capes," "birthdays" and being "nineteen."

A good portion of Moonbeams shies away from the playful Boy Least Likely To elements, and instead embraces, especially vocally, a Casiotone for the Painfully Alone or Robot Ate Me feel. "A Mutinous Dream" borrows from Mixel Pixel and definitely merits the Aqueduct association. Hard to explain why this one is so good, the music is nothing too experimental or unique; perhaps its lead-singer Scott Reitherman's casual style and sub-lyrics, "darlin'" and "dear God," that give the band its edge.

"About to Walk" is the B-side to "Lolita," and while it's not the second best, it's the second most enjoyable. Good bands always manage to salvage a stupid or questionable moment in a song and find brilliancy in something so simple. The band works around the crap line "I was just about to walk five miles in a day," which is sung in a nerdy, complaining manner, and moves to a band member leaving a really realistic phone message to Scott. "Hey Scott, umm...I met a girl and, ah, she was really great...anyway [embarrassed laughter]...have a good day," which works nicely as the song closes.

The first quarter will be huge for the Seattle five-piece: opening for labelmate Jens Lekman, the aforementioned SXSW performance, the February 19 release of Moonbeams, as well as the U.S. tour (still in the works) starting March 21. B- | Joseph O'Fallon

RIYL: Casiotone for the Painfully Alone, Mixel Pixel, Aqueduct, Crystal Skulls

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