May 21, 2010

The School Graduates To Full-Fledged Indie-Soul Status

Twee bands of yesteryear, indie-popsters in today's terms, have always had a healthy dose of soul to help their music get down. The School has been no exception. They've just recenlty released their debut full-length player, and as expected they have put together a charming blend of girlishly delicious soul music, with sunny pop music. It's a mix that is often attempted, and seldom achieved with more than mediocre success.

The School however have gone above and beyond mediocre to be sure. The album bounces along from their 2008 single "Let It Slip" to the jaunty, girl-groupish "Hoping And Praying", to the very twee-like "I Want You Back".

The songs are tight and dancable. The vocals are light and sweet and seem to almost float along atop the music itself. There's nothing terribly deep about the album --a seemingly familiar love story-- which adds to its charm and makes it work all that much more. And while it's not deep, the last song --featuring the only male vocal-- is poignant in its title statement, "I Don't Believe In Love." The song is also the moodiest and most captivating in that respect.

All in all a very enjoyable album on many levels. Fans of Camera Obscura, Duffy, The Icicles, The Pipettes (the real original Pipettes not the poor knock-offs wearing the name of late), Birdie and so on will probably love this album. So will everyone else who gives it a whirl.

The School -- Hoping And Praying