Broadcast - Haha Sound LP
Vocalist Trish Keenan murmurs and sings in her wistful, lullaby-perfect voice that nears the clarity and sweetness of Karen Carpenter or Julee Cruise. It's the perfect foil for the fizzing and churning backdrop of analog synths, guitars, bass and percussion created by Roj Stevens, Tim Felton, James Cargill and Steve Perkins – tipping their collective hat to '60s Brill Building girl groups, the grand sentimental lovey-dovey-ness of Bacharach, and Esquivelian space age bachelor pads everywhere. Broadcast skillfully craft glistening, starry-eyed music that swirls and creaks like an old carousel, but just as ably veer off into more eccentric, trippy territory a la Bruce Haack, Raymond Scott and Joe Meek (psst, this contrast is perfectly exemplified at the meeting between songs 7 and 8 – "Lunch Hour Pops" and "Black Umbrellas" – check 'em out!). Perhaps the time has come that the occlusive "Stereolab Jr." tag they've been saddled with (granted, quite aptly so) may be tossed in the trash. Very recommended!