Monday, July 20, 2009
Without stating the obvious, 2003 was a long, long time ago. The sounds that dominated those years are long since forgotten and for most touring outfits that cut their teeth in that era, trying to successfully bridge the gap of changing landscapes and fans over a half decade in this increasingly inpatient industry is almost impossible.
Considering the fact Reverie Sound Revue broke up, sold out their original EP, got back together and haven’t released any material in the last five years makes the expectations heaped on their new LP even more surprising.
The more surprising fact is that not only did RSR meet the high expectations of fans that probably can barely remember the original members or their all too short EP, they exceeded them. Driven apart by school, location and time, Reverie Sound Revue shouldn’t have been able to create such a unique, swift slice of dreamy pop – Yes, they have the chops. They’ve always had the chops – but since reforming in 2005 they’ve never all been in the same room to record, and you’d be naive to expect such a confident record that personifies the fresh start the morning brings and moves without a single misstep.
The self-titled full length – out on Boompa now – shows that RSR is more than Lisa Lobsingers sexy coo; more than the fantastic guitar interplay Patrick Walls and Marc De Pape or a tight rhythm section. They took 5 years to record the songs, ensuring the final product was perfect and remarkably, by not rushing the process or trying to fall inline with the sounds of today, RSR has released one of the best pop records of the year.
Opening with An Anniversary Away, the band blends Lisa’s vocal presence with an airy groove that never tries to do too much. The band lets you settle into the ear pleasing tones of the dueling guitars and rapid fire drumming. When the follow it up with the bass and drum heavy, We are the Opposte of Thieves, a track that uses Libsinger’s falsetto so perfectly, you wonder if the band has used the first six-minutes to show their best work.
In reality however, the record is sequenced beautifully. Starting out of the gate with two quick moving pop nuggets they grab your attention, they pull the reigns and control the ride as Debut to a Prelude floats by like clouds, but the distorted tones the band puts over the harmonies gives it just enough traction to keep you interested. And that’s pretty well the best way to describe RSR really. Even while exploring the most pleasant melodies and dream-like textures, the band manages to keep on foot on the ground, resulting in a record that is full of singles (An Anniversary Now, Arrows, You Don't Exist if I Don't See You) but still cohesive and complete listen.
Somehow, during the extended recording and writing process, RSR stayed true to their sound but shifted enough to keep it modern and unique. I’d ask people to take a page from Reverie Sound Revue’s book, but if I had to wait another five years to hear something this good, it would be pretty tragic.