Attic Lights and Strangely Alright

Attic Lights “Super De Luxe”
The Scottish band Attic Lights makes good on its sophomore LP, produced by Teenage Fanclub’s Francis Macdonald. Starting with “Say You Love Me”it  enjoying both heavy guitar riffs and shouts of “Hey Hey Hey!” and swooning backing harmonies, its a great catchy opener. “Future Bound” is more disco pop with a funky rhythm and a solid hook in the chorus. The Scottish accent really comes out in the verses of the sophisticated mid-tempo ballad “Mona Lisa.” Other highlights include “Hit and Miss,” “Gabrielle” and the most rock oriented tune “Orbison.” Only a few pedestrian song here, but overall a great album full of modern power pop.

Strangely Alright “The Time Machine Is Broken”
Lead by singer/songwriter Regan Lane, Strangely Alright is a five piece power pop group from Tacoma, Washington. Although the album starts pretty conventionally with the expansive rock song “Train To Nowhere,” Lane’s stylized vocal, the hand claps and warbling backing vocals all keep it compelling. The fuzzy rich chorus on “So Right It Can’t Be Wrong” has brilliantly quirky touches similar to Jackdaw4 with swooning “ahhs” in the chorus.

The lyrics are a complex and downbeat for most of the album’s first half, especially “Crying Shame.” The combo of John Lennon meeting Pink Floyd is felt on ““If I Don’t Laugh I’m Only Going to Cry,” the jangle and psyche-pop combo are awesome, it’s the highlight of the LP. While the albums second half doesn’t reach those highs, the mood lightens and some standouts include “Love” and “Direction Home.” A grower, that does most things right.

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