here we go magic pigeons
    • TUESDAY, JUNE 15, 2010

    • Posted by:

    Here We Go Magic make pretty, quaint, plastic sounding music, all of which makes it hard to discern from kitsch-y trinkets and baubles (in a good way). It's the kind of music you don't expect, but are overjoyed to find stuffed in your stocking. The beauty of Pigeons is the quirky appeal; slap-bass sounds and falsetto harmonies that right off the bat come off as odd-rock, but kind of melt into each other in wonderful ways. It's something like Ben Gibbard making music for an old SNES game, catchy, quick, and saccharine in surprising ways.

    "Collector", an early track, suggested a poppier collection of tunes, but I'm actually kind of glad the entire Pigeons track-list is as weird as it is; it colors the whole thing a bit more unique than a bunch of hip kids trying to freak us out with tired gimmicks. "Old World United" is the best example of this aesthetic... it hums along with video-game quality and a melody that by several other standards would be super strange. Here, Luke Temple somehow gets head bobs and nods for the bleep bleeps salting the tail end of the hook. I'm still trying to figure how he can please both blipsters and NPR at the same time (a feat that is becoming easier, but still isn't super easy).

    "Bottom Feeder", a mediocre Shins-ish ballad, seems wholly out of place. On a record that prides itself on it's gripping lack of reality, it's a sobering moment in the hallucinations. But maybe it's a reminder that all of the fuzz is intentional... after all, it's easy to mistake Temple's neurosis for a worthless stock, a gross miscalculation of his intentions. "Feeder" is a reminder, a giveaway, a tell. These guys could write an album of sappy cardboard pop. They know it. When Here We Go Magic starts coloring outside the lines, it's all intentional, even if it seems miscalculated and sloppy. A great trick, and the slight of hand keeps us interested and guessing how they do it. It's like they always say: a great illusion is all about the misdirection, and Luke Temple is going to continue to keep us guessing. -joe puglisi

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