Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Papercuts - Fading Parade (2011)

Papercuts fifth album is a warning to all the young artists that want to start making music inside the Lo-Fi arena, it’s a trend with a lot of repetitions and only if you’re really good at it the production will help you, if not, the production will kill you, is that simple; and that’s the case of Papercuts, a very talented band that for their first big LP in a new “big” small record label (Sub Pop); instead of pushing the sound to another level, they did the same of their previous album and not updating their style, but leaving it exactly there, and the last time around, in the 2009 “You Can Have What You Want” they were capturing what dream pop is all about.

The Dream Pop sound should be about atmosphere and not about a clear picture, the music must express things in a sort of a haze but the music also needs to have a direction, that’s why the appreciation of details inside the atmosphere of the music only adds charm and makes the listener enjoy the little dots of focus here and there. When the Dream Pop becomes more of a dream and the haziness becomes more of a deep fog that doesn’t let you see anything you’ve got a problem, and Papercuts are guilty as charge in this LP, they put the dream on Dream Pop and all you want to do is go to sleep while the album is happening.

But don’t get me wrong, I love sleeping, the thing is that when your music knocks you out the value is not to enjoy it but to leave it there as a quiet companion that keeps you out of the addiction of sleeping pills, so in a way this kinds of records are a life and family savers, but don’t add anything to music.

In terms of the songs, none of them are bad, they get kid of all over the place lost in the reverb, and instead of becoming sort of cloudy like in Deerhunter’s albums, or become incredibly loud building from a straight silence to be elevated to a dream like M83, this band just gets lost behind a cloud, and you can almost hear that something cool is happening but is so far away that instead of pushing a right button gets exhausting, so listener finally gives up in trying to grab something out of it and settles for the blur.

I see a lot of people liking this sound for different reasons, it never gets hateful, and is never really awful, but in the end it’s just another dream pop band in the spectrum, and having to be there without adding anything special is just sad. I know every song might’ve been better if all the cloudy reverb would’ve been turned down a little to let the listener appreciate what was happening, but not even live their sounding that way. Again, I get why people like this, is just that I don’t get it. Why put the dream on Dream Pop if you can make an exciting dream? And if you’re going to make a dream about dreaming why not making it epic and do a sort of inception kind of dream? Do it epic or don’t abuse of the reverb, keep it simple, sometimes less is more.

The album is called "Fading Parades" and the reality is that it just fades away. For me is very Average, not bad, not good, just average, with good moments that could be great but are not. Some songs remind me of Seabear, and I love Seabear, but I rather listen to Seabear, there is really not much pulling me to say that this LP is great. It's a cute LP, listen to it, perhapes you'll like it, all I know is I don't hate it.


1. Do You Really Want To Know
2. Do What You Will
3. I'll See You Later I Guess
4. Chills
5. The Messenger
6. White Are The Waves
7. Wait Till I'm Dead
8. Marie Says You've Changed
9. Winter Daze
10. Charades

Rate: 6/10

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