Monday, September 20, 2010

New London Fire "Happiness Through Radio and Wires"

(Air and Sea Battle) This ambitious record recreates the rich harmonies of fifties vocals groups, and groups like the Beach Boys who were influenced by the doo wop era, it tries to capture the songwriting sensibilities of the 60s pop craftsmen, and it taps into the fun and discovery of music that most of today's frumpily dressed indie mopes forgot about. But it's not a retro nostalgia fest, or a Billy Joel tribute to doo wop, or a Broadway jukebox musical. The lead singer's voice, especially when contrasted with Beach Boys or doo wop harmonies behind him, is a contemporary one, and the lyrics at times keep it way more "real" than those from the era they are nodding towards (except for the water park song, which is really just about having fun at the waterpark). Though there's little London on this record, plenty is new and on fire.

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