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It’s simply amazing to me that a group from the drizzly grey of Glasgow could consistently creates such effervescent, make-you-want-to-sing-along head-bopping pop music -- but that's exactly what Camera Obscura does time and again. Their fifth album, Desire Lines, is a stunningly bright ray of musical sunshine.
This latest release is grounded in beach music and the classic sounds of 50’s rock. Not that lead singer Traceyanne Campbell channels The Ronettes or anything, but the influences are subtly present. Absent are the soaring horn runs and orchestration of past hits like “French Navy,” replaced rather by soft-about-the-edges string melodies. Campbell’s voice is the real star of the record, wonderfully supported by subdued instrumentation. Her range is amazing, dreamily lilting into the atmosphere on “This is Love (Feels Alright)” and then breaking like delicate china teacups on “Every Weekday.”
The addition of Neko Case (!!) on backing vocals lends perfect symmetry to the feel of the record, even sounding very similar to something she could have created herself. Case’s and Campbell’s voices blend in such tummy-warming harmony, maybe we can look forward to further collaborations in the future? I can only dream.
(photo by Wendy Lynch)
Is your life deprived of adorable Glaswegians? I'm going to go ahead and say yes, because how could you ever have enough cute Scots in your life? Well, the remedy is Camera Obscura live at the Showbox at the Market on Saturday! The last time I saw them, they were so cute that people cheered them on even when they made mistakes. Of course, that was 2004, on tour for their adorably twee Underachievers Please Try Harder. Since then, they've made two beautifully lush 60's wall of sound records, Let's Get Out of This Country, and the newest, My Maudlin Career.
Camera Obscura have grown up over the years, now producing gorgeously lush reverb soaked and sometimes very danceable pop, and since they're Scottish, who knows when they'll be back!
The show is all ages, and doors are at 8. Local boys the Lonely Forest, as well as Agent Ribbon open. See you there!
I'll be the first to admit that when I heard there was a new Camera Obscura record coming out, I expected a new collection of indie pop tunes in the vein of "Lloyd, I'm Ready to Be Heartbroken" or "Let's Get Out Of This Country." The first track on My Maudlin Career is "French Navy," -- also the album's first single -- a string-heavy, upbeat song that stays true to its pop roots by only lasting three minutes and reminds me a lot of "Lloyd..."
Lush indie pop fans rejoice! Glaswegians Camera Obscura will grace our fair city on June 6th at the Showbox at the Market! I have long awaited this day, as for whatever reason, the past several times they were in town I couldn't make it out. I've had their latest, My Maudlin Career, on very high rotation since it came out, and I'll be front and center singing my heart out.
To make this news even better, we're giving away a pair of tickets to the show! Just e-mail us at tig at threeimaginarygirls.com with the subject line "MyMaudlinCareer" to be entered to win! Just make sure that if your e-mail address is something silly like email@example.com or something that you give us your full name in the body of your e-mail. We'll be taking entries until 11p Tuesday, June 2nd.
For a little incentive, here's a video of them playing one of my favorites, "If Looks Could Kill", which no matter where it's played, incites a crazy dance party. You won't want to miss this show!
Folks near and far are getting excited about the impending release Camera Obscura album. The Glasgow band will release My Maudlin Career on April 21 (4AD) and are marking the newest effort by finally announcing some US tour dates and posting a video for the single "French Navy." I for one have loved the discussions speculating whether they were going to be surprising us at a music fest of the east or west ilk and when and where they'll play Seattle. Alas, the latter mystery has been solved!
Holy bajeezus! It's the week for popfest announcements! The lovely folks over at Indietracks have put out their innitial lineup for their amazing train station festival in Derbyshire, UK for July 24th-26th. They're advertising five stages, free steam train rides, and indie pop discos. This lineup hurts my head, and last night, all I could think was to make a 30 Rock reference, and I just kept saying "I want to go to there!". (Bolded where it causes me great excitement!)
BMX Bandits/ Bonne Idée/ Camera Obscura/ The Carrots/ Cola Jet Set/ Cooper/ Countryside/ Disasteradio/ Downdime/ Eux Autres/ Fitness Forever/ The Frank And Walters/ Hong Kong In The 60s/Kevin McGrother/ La Casa Azul/ Le Man Avec Les Lunettes/ Little My/ The Lovely Eggs/ Lucky Soul/Mighty Mighty/ Nick Garrie/ Northern Portrait/ One Happy Island/ The Pete Green Corporate/ Juggernaut/ Pocketbooks/ Ray Rumours & The No-Eyed/Dears/ The School/ Single/ The Smittens/ Speedmarket Avenue/ Ste McCabe/ Tender Trap/ The Understudies
The first AstroPOP! for 2007 featuring rock and roll astrological reviews of releases by the following bands: Tom Brosseau, The Trolleyvox, Ghost Stories, Indigo Girls, Dave Fischoff, Camera Obscura, Euros ChildS, Cranebuilders, Menomena, The Besnard Lakes, Chin Up Chin Up, and Bossa Nova.