I've recently arrived back in Australia, and have been confronted by searing 35 degree days and beautiful warming sunshine upon my return. In some ways I miss the chill of the air and the changing leaves that autumn (or fall) brought in the United States, but I'm able to capture the mood with the fifth (and final) album by Boston's Pants Yell!, Received Pronunciation.
As one of my favourite bands of recent years, it's an absolute delight to listen to a new record by this trio, whose storytelling lyrics (courtesy of Andrew Churchman), coupled with clean, simple melodies, are at the pinnacle of modern pop. While the album might lack the soaring majesty that strings added to their last record, Alison Statton, there's a certain maturity and all round elegance that embraces this record. I love the simple drumbeat that kicks the record off, on "Frank and Sandy", which to me sounds like it's about parents, rather than hangovers. And it's this crypticism that lives in Andrew's lyrics that makes the band much more endearing - isn't it a much richer experience to listen to the lyrics when they have something to say and comprehend?
Elsewhere, there's scratchy guitars and stop-start rhythms on "Got to Stop", which combines angsty lyrics with some damn fine jangle, and a brilliant shimmer of cymbals across "Someone Loves You". Overall, though, Received Pronunciation might not capture your consciousness from the first listen, but rest assured, like with most good things in the world, time and patience will reward you with more riches than you could imagine. Best of all, buy this record and score yourself the coolest obi strip!
Buy yourself a copy of Received Pronunciation from our dear friends at Slumberland!