Being new to the world of album reviews, I decided to just write whatever popped into my head while listening to Le Pop for the first time (not unlike anything else I write, ever).
I generally love things with bells and accordion-sounding instruments, so this sounds really promising from moment one, and very eclectic, and very un-categorize-able. I’m waiting for the lead of Gogol Bordello to come in with his crazy guy voice and tell me to start wearing purple.
Oh yes…I like this. The lead’s voice sounds a little bit like Hayley Williams with a tiny accent, or a more mellow Roisin Murphy, and when the other girls chime in, the harmonies are tight enough that you think it miiiiight be the lead’s voice, just dubbed over and over again, but you’re not willing to commit to that.
The lyrics, in general, are fun, while not being entirely life changing, which I really appreciate. I get tired of new bands that think they have so many important and amazing and never-been-though-of things to say that their lyrics are wildly complex metaphors that don’t really make sense and no one resonates with. Although I do wish that Demon Kitty Rag was actually about a kitty.
Katzenjammer walks a fine line with another new band thing I have a hard time with: the use of atypicall, not-necessarily-musical noises in song. I like the sounds of airplanes taking off as much as the next girl (who doesn’t really like them), but that doesn’t mean that I want to hear that at the beginning of a song about how your lost love is like a tear drop at the bottom of the ocean in the wreckage of a 1720s pirate ship that’s been pillaged by modern-day Vikings. But these girls manage to use the strange, unusual-in-music sounds (see Tea With Cinnamon and Le Pop take wild trips to the carnival) consistently throughout songs, and not just as attention getters, so they don’t feel out of place, and somehow, they make sense.
The title track makes me imagine the Beach Boys, the B52s and Toni Basil performing in Disney’s California Adventure’s Paradise Pier. I just needed to say that because I had really strong nostalgic moments of all of those people/places while listening to that song.
Their slower, not-really-ballads-but-still-slow songs are easy to listen to, and do a good job of carrying a full sound, while not trying to be epic.
In general, this album makes me want to first, learn the lyrics immediately, so that I can sing along at the top of my lungs on some unscheduled road trip, and second, learn old dances from the 40s in case I ever get to see these girls live, because I’m pretty sure that’s what the crowd ends up doing after everyone’s had a few drinks. It just makes sense.
And more than anything, this album makes me excited to see Katzenjammer live, which is a big deal all around. I just hope they actually travel with all of the crazy instruments I’m hearing, instead of a bunch of Macbooks.