One Happy Island is the sound of friends having fun! Brad, Shannon and Meghan recorded this latest album in front of an intimate audience at Armory Sound in Somerville, Massachusetts. The recording is crisp and completely captures their sense of infectious energy and musical aspirations.
Although undeniably twee and sporting a cultivated lo-fi sound, there are myriad influences thrown in their musical blender - a little bit of rock n roll, a whole lot of bluegrass and a traditional American folk sound, ala The Carter Family, all mixed together with an effortless glee.
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I've got a couple of tweepop LPs from Weepop in my review pile today, the first of which being this one by One Happy Island. I'm appreciating the no-bullshit approach that's been taken here - the 14 songs were recorded live over the space of two days last August and are wordy but economically arranged bits of low-key psych pop with plenty of acoustic guitar (as well as touches of brass, stylophone, xylophone, etc, keeping things interesting). The sound quality is perfectly adequate, especially considering it's a live recording.
What it's reminding me of the most are the early Of Montreal recordings when they were a bit more acoustic-based. The songs are sweet and quirky but the stripped back approach means they avoid many of the cloyingly syrupy tweepop cliches that many contemporaries fall into. There's no faux-naive gang vocals to be found, just thoughtful anecdotal songsmithery.
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