|Too often bands release b-sides and rarities as compilations. Too often these releases seem like a desperate attempt by the record label to capitalize on the success of said band. I typically scoff at this maneuver as I believe there is a good reason these tracks weren’t included on the original albums…they’re not worthy. They didn’t make the cut because they simply don’t cut it.|
Chicago art pop outfit A Lull is a monolith, a beacon of creativity and part of the garde that is the last bastion of conceptual pop music. This band rides on no one’s coattails. At a time when two out of three bands are riding some sort of former era revivalism, this crew is putting on blinders and with nose to the grindstone is actually composing elegant and genuinely original pop music.
Reprise includes four pieces that weren’t included on the original album. After hearing this, it seems that Confetti should have been a double LP after all. The vocals are an individual sound that doesn’t seek to emulate anyone prior and there are too many instruments involved to even list. Everything seems to have been thrown into the kitchen sink and processed just a bit. And the arrangements are a whirlwind of chaos that somehow never sounds overdone. They unveil a cacophony in each track that is sometimes built to a crescendo and sometimes given free reign in a minimal driving format that feels free but is always contained in six minutes or less.
As on the first release, the lyrics are childlike and primal, seeming like a hybrid of luddism and futurism, an interesting paradox that distinguishes this band from their contemporaries and one that aids in lifting them out of the mire that is the mindless, misdirected and stagnant dead end of the now.
Some familiar elements do abound. I hear a bit of Dirty Projectors, Grizzly Bear, The Dodos and Bear in Heaven but I also hear Karlheinz Stockhausen, Pierre Henry and even a dash of Al Jourgensen’s 90′s production work.
A Lull is few and far between. There is no retromania here, only the extremely focused and driven output of a few pop visionaries. - Delusions Of Adequacy