She & Him
Volume One

[Merge Records, www.mergerecords.com]

  Debut from one-man band M. Ward and vocalist Zooey Deschanel, "Volume One" is a throw-back of sorts. It sees a return to doo-wop pop stylings of the 50s. This is music that is simple and pure. Lyrics to most of the tunes on the record were penned by Deschanel, while Ward provides guitars and some of the other instrumentation on the record. Multitude of special guests - from Adam Selzer, Tom Hagerman, Peter Broderick to Paul Brainer - were enlisted to help out. Deschanel spent a good number of years in her youth singing in choirs and it shows. Harmonic superiority is heard everywhere. "This is Not a Test" sounds like a testament to a gospel choir, while "I Thought I Saw Your Face Today" appears to be a tribute to country & western traditions of the 60s. "I Was Made For You" recalls Ronnie Spector and damn it, I wish we could turn back the clock, but we can't. The retro feel of the record is phenomenal in its ability to transport the listener to a time when gas was cheap, milkshakes were thick and rock and roll was in its infancy. Here's hoping further installments of this duo's recorded output will be as savory and rich as their debut.

  - Tom Sekowski


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RECENZJE

+ Henry Flynt - Nova'Billy
+ Les Rallizes Denudes - Are You Rallizesed? Shizuoka Stupa 1974
+ Jack Rose - Dr Ragtime & Pals/Self Titled
+ Clark-Hutchinson - A=MH2... expanded
+ The Deep - Psychedelic Moods
+ Dandelion - Dandelion
+ SHIRA U'TFILA - Sephardic Songs from the Balkans
+ Maja S. K. Ratkje - River Mouth Echoes

- - - - - - - - -

+ Jason Ajemian - The Art of Dying
+ Lily & Maria - Lily & Maria
+ Modern Sound Quintet - Otinku / Rudy Smith Quartet - Still Around / Steel An'Skin - Reggae is Here Once Again
+ Nicole Willis and the Soul Investigators - Keep Reachin' Up
+ Daniel Levin Quartet - Blurry
+ Death in June & Boyd Rice - Scorpion Wind
+ Paul Bradley - Màs Memorias Extranjeras
+ My Cat is an Alien / Mats Gustafsson - Cosmic Debris - Split Art-LPs series - Vol. IV / Painting Petals on Planet Ghost - Fallen Camellias
+ Davor Mikan - TŠuschung
+ Lars Fredriksson - Ting Qiu - Listening to Autumn
+ Setting Sun - Children of the Wild / Quitzow - Art College
+ Äänet - Aquarian Forest / String Cheese - String Cheese / Planivaar - Jigsaw / Zdzisław Piernik - Namanga - Plays compositions of Piotr Zabrodzki / The Elastik Band - The Elastik Band / John DahlbŠck - Winners & Fools / Suns of Arqa - Suns of Arqa Re-Mixs Muslimgauze / The Fabric - Man vs. Prototype / LD & The New Criticism - Amoral Certitudes EP / Critikal - Graphorrhea / Steve Peters - The Webster Cycles / Yoshio Machida - Hypernatural #3 / The Blakes - The Blakes / Pagans - The Blue Album / Tripping Horse - Tripping Horse / Dennis Gonzalez NY Quartet - Dance of the Soothsayer's Tongue - At Tonic / Gilbert Holmstršm Quartet - Live in Sweden 1967 / Soriah - Ofrendas de Luz a Los Muertos / Matomeri - Joys of Summer / Delon & Dalcan - Tanz / Oophoi - An Aerial View / Keith Jarrett / Gary Peacock / Jack DeJohnette - Setting Standards - New York Sessions / Rome - Masse Mensch Material / Steve Moore - Stebmo / Sun Plexus 2 - En Souvenir de L'Horreur / Various Artists - Compost Black Label - Series Vol. 3 - Mixed by Jay Shepheard / Svartbag - Svartbag / Maju - Maju-5 / He Can Jog - Middlemarch / Antenne - # 3 / Tupolev - Memories of Björn Bolssen / Demian - Demian / The Dust Dive - Claws of Light / Uri Caine - The Classical Variations / Jasmina Maschina - The Demolition Series / Bill Thompson - ...Of Memory and Dreams / Various Artists - I Like It Like That / Steve Lantner Trio - What You Can Throw / Berger / Knutsson / Spering - Up Close / Capillary Action - So Embarrasing / Richard Chartier - Further Materials / Die Resonanz - Edelbrand
+ Big Dipper - Supercluster - The Big Dipper Anthology
+ Brian Agro - Procession of the Ornaments
+ Elektronavn - Cosmic Continuum
+ Heaven And - Sweeter As The Years Roll By
+ Club 8 - The Friend I Once Had - Club 8 - Spring Came, Rain Fell - Strangely Beautiful
+ Giacomo Merega / David Tronzo / Noah Kaplan - The Light and Other Things
+ His Name is Alive - Firefly Dragonfly EP
+ Robin Saville - Peasgood Nonsuch
+ RLW / TITO - Mahlzeit / Kiko C. Esseiva - Sous les Žtoiles
+ Borko - Celebrating Life
+ William Basinski + Richard Chartier - Untitled 1-3 / William Basinski - The River
+ Carl Stone - Woo Lae Oak
+ William Parker & The Little Huey Creative Music Orchestra - For Percy Heath
+ Various Artists - Recycling Records Presents: The Best of Polish Smooth Jazz... Ever! / Yasushi Yoshida - Little Grace / Nicola Ratti - From the Desert Came Saltwater
+ Cuong Vu - Vu-Tet
+ Martin Baumgartner - Shoot's Huft
+ Lindha Kallerdahl - Gold
+ Worrytrain - Fog Dance, My Moth Kingdom
+ David Buchbinder - Odessa/Havana
>> She & Him - Volume One
+ Lead Sister II - Interplanetary Craft