The Pains of Being Pure at Heart — who were named after an unpublished children’s story written by a friend of lead singer Kip Berman — return today with their second full-length, Belong. The record was produced by Flood and mixed by Alan Moulder of Smashing Pumpkins and My Bloody Valentine fame, respectively.
Title track “Belong” opens the album with 12 seconds of unobtrusive musical pleasantry, followed by an eruption of hard distortion that will encourage immediate air-guitar strummage from anyone who suffered through their teens in the 1990s. Cue Berman’s sexy vocals and some I’m-bored-so-let’s-just-do-it lyrics (“If you’re mine / I don’t mind / we tried another / let’s try each other”) and you have the recipe for a PoBPaH grilled chicken sandwich (but clearly not a PoBPaH coq au vin).
There’s no musical rocket science here. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart simply make music that is easy to listen to: catchy guitar+keyboard melodies, four-by-four bass plucking and drum beating, guy/girl harmonies that make it easy to sing along with your significant other in the car, and lyrics that inspire self-inflicted, diminutive mysterioso (see the lyric “Held my breath / thought of death / and things I’d like to do ’til then” on “Girls of 1000 Dreams”). Continue reading…
Over the course of their career, The Prids have released a slew of excellent records. But it wasn’t until this year — when the rural Missourians released Chronosynclastic — that things really got going.
Chronosynclastic is about experience, and Prids primaries David Frederickson and Mistina La Fave have plenty of it. Their tumultuous relationship has taken them from love to marriage to divorce but, all the while, they’ve kept the band alive. That hard-won balance between harmony and conflict is reflected in their songwriting.
Sometimes dark, other times steeped in joy, but always surprising, Chronosynclastic‘s melodies, boy/girl vocals, and addictive hooks make this band an underrated gem of 2010.
In the midst of their current U.S. tour, La Fave sent us a list of ten songs that comprise her Poetic Memory. The band doesn’t have any San Diego dates on the schedule, but we hope they’ll come back soon. Mistina’s Poetic Memory, a video for The Prids’ song “Break,” and a full list of tour dates are below. Continue reading…