Is this record worth a spin? Should I buy it? Will it add to or detract
from my credibility? Should I care?
I wish someone could break it down for me.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Mathieu Santos- Massachusetts

With Cheers, the Berkshires, and Ben & Matt, what's not to love? Naming your record Massachusetts is a sure way to engender good vibes. Naming your album Nebraska, however, might have a much different effect. Oh wait, Springsteen already did that. Well, Santos is the bassist for the Syracuse, NY based band Ra Ra Riot, a prime example of the current music industry's hype machine in that they were playing large festivals shortly after being "discovered". Ra Ra Riot's drummer accidentally drowned in a Massachusetts bay in 2007 so the title may be an homage to him. Knowing such, there is an eeriness to the seagull and maritime sounds that buffer the title track, a track that borrows derivative African vocal and melody patterns, similar to those found in Paul Simon and Vampire Weekend songs. Santos vocal effects also resemble the echo/reverb effects used by Animal Collective, a layered chorus in an empty cathedral sound. "Wait To Get Up" sounds like the synth exercise for a Police song. The album's charm lies in it's lo-fi pop aesthetic and fans of Animal Collective will be especially appreciative of it.

Buy this record if you're stuck in Rhode Island with a broken fuel pump and no windshield wiper fluid.


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