The Autumns The Autumns

[Pseudopod; 2004]

Styles: shoegazer, dream pop, indie rock
Others: Slowdive, Midsummer, Auburn Lull, Cocteau Twins

I'm convinced that The Autumns simply do not have it in their power to write a mediocre record. However, it is in my opinion that they do have great difficulties in trying to write a follow-up that can equally match or exceed the shear beauty of their initial debut, The Angel Pool. Those that might not be familiar with the band should really consider referencing their back catalog and familiarizing themselves with the band's unique, dreamy-based ethereal pop goodness.

On their third full length record, the band continues to write catchy and lulling melodies that are coated with an almost contradicting sense of optimism, plunging the listener into an uplifting form of melancholic bliss. When I listen to parts of the album (i.e. "Flies in the Eyes of the Queen"), I almost feel as if I am suddenly transported to a magical circus, similar in many respects to Cirque du Soleil. The only thing is that while those around me are enjoying the festivities with smiles all around and small children are taken aback from the mysterious wonders of the performances, I feel almost lost in complete solitude, consumed by my own internal somber mental processes. The true beauty of the band's songwriting abilities is that point exactly; they're able to magnify the listener's own state of mind. One is able to mentally view some of the most delicate, serene, and graceful moments in life when listening to the music. On the other hand, it is also very easy to get caught up in all of the pain and tragedy that are interwoven into an individual's life.

Going back to the music itself, it is clear to see that the members are all very skilled at their respective instruments. Collectively, they succeed in their abilities to create a strong sense of dynamics; from the frail and fragile to the ear-piercing intensity reminiscent of many early shoegazer bands. Even the band's interlays flow beautifully such as the brilliant "The Moon Softly Weeps a Lullaby," which is so epic that it feels like it really belongs in the latest installment of the Final Fantasy series. Other standout tracks like "Deathly Little Dreams," "Slumberdoll," and "Desole" round the album out to make another fine addition to the band's previous works.

1. The End
2. Hush, Plain Girls
3. Deathly Little Dreams
4. Desole
5. Flies in the Eyes of the Queen
6. Every Sunday Sky
7. Slumberdoll
8. Edmond & Edward
9. Wish Stars
10. The Moon Softly Weeps a Lullaby
11. Cattleya
12. Wonderfully Wonderful
13. Heartsick on the Open Sea