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Shapiro particularly has a nice handle on self-actualisation, venting her fears around a grumbling bass line as she courts older men on ‘If You Want Me To’ (”One day I’ll be old/Face like a maze/Tending to our home/If you want it so”).It’s one of the sweetest, most biting moments on the album; a reminder that it takes a knack to combine incisiveness with independently catchy tunes, but that this duo have the gift.Ask me things with no warning Has someone been questioning for you?
You’d think 31-year-old New Yorker Green, who’s often strayed into try-hard ‘I shagged a giraffe, ma! But the subtle, sleepy, silkily textured likes of ‘Pity Love’ and the spry, sly ‘Just To Make Me Feel Good’ are a sweet breeze.
The former Moldy Peach teams up with the singer of Little Joy for a full length that mines the legacies left by Lee and Nancy, Richard and Linda, and Gram and Emmylou, but transcends merely accurate pastiche by imbuing the collection with intelligence and wryness.
Adam Green, pal of The Strokes and former Moldy Peach, has hooked up with Binki Shapiro, former collaborator with Fabrizio Moretti in the luscious Little Joy, to tread dangerous ground.
The old Nancy & Lee sultry-country patch is well-worn, and steering clear of godawful She & Him tweeness takes a deft hand and just the right balance of eeriness and ease.
Green and Shapiro’s hippy guitar sound gels perfectly with their lyrics that snipe at couples caught in freefall.
It’s like an angrier, updated Nancy & Lee, with ‘Casanova’ taking a hazy country tune and letting Shapiro sing over it like she’s defending herself on a stalking charge (”Don’t want the wrong person holding me/Why are you always finding/New ways of wasting my time/Why are you always hiding/Am I not supposed to look you in the eye”).
This is country pop with black sequins, only safe for mum and dad to put on once the kids have been removed from the conflicted parties’ house.
‘Pity Love’ finds a no-longer-bothered Green explaining his antics to his mousy girlfriend, singing ”My heart is everywhere/Splitting out like thunder/Everybody’s cheating on each other/My pity pity love/Almost stronger than the real thing”.
Things clicked, and Green and Shapiro wisely decided to develop the fortuitous outing into this full-fledged debut album.
Their respective backgrounds-- the salt-stung breeze of Little Joy, the Peaches' bizarro anti-folk, Green's solo singer-songwriter rock pastiche-- make a likely invocation of the legacies left by Lee and Nancy, Richard and Linda, Gram and Emmylou.