Taking a listen

by Heather MacIntyre

In Passing — Breathing In The Ash

I have to say, I really enjoyed A Small Victory… when I was in high school. Sometimes, after experiencing more music,you are able to look back and wonder what the heck you were thinking (except Hanson, they were great! Right?). What happens? They break up, reunite, mix and match, however it happens… the music, the writing, even the way they sing is a little more mature. In Passing, who now employs Winston-Salem’s Monday In London guitarist, Sterling Plemmons, have released an EP of a somewhat mature demeanor. How about some more North Carolina help for this Florida flop? Sullivan front man Brooks Paschal helped produce the album! Good news, the production sounds great, but the actual music arrangements, and songs in general, just project an EP of filler. I can appreciate the drumming, and the classic pop-rock sound of the vocalist which resembles that of the former Hotlanta band a Small Victory. Though there isn’t anything “wrong” with the album, the guitar work and energy of the music simply give me reason to believe that they would be one of those bands most enjoyed live. Coincidentally, they’ll be at Greene Street ( this Sunday with Mercy Mercedes. The quasi pop-rock-ish band with love songs and slightly whiney voice just seems overplayed. Though the album is tight and together, I think the drinking age is an age limit for the full appreciation of this release.

Rating: 2.5 records (out of 5)

Kimya Dawson — Alphabutt For those of you who enjoyed “Remember, I Love You” or any of her handful of hits on the Juno soundtrack last year, great news, well… for your children. Kimya Dawson has put out her highly anticipated children’s album. The sound and composure of these songs aren’t far from her previous adult tunes, with context being the only thing setting them apart. She possesses the same folk story telling by talk-singing in her sweet young girl voice, incongruous to her look. But her bigger-than-Macy-Gray hair and world traveling was no match for the birth of her daughter, Panda Delilah, the reason behind this release. If you keep up with her blogs, Myspace and other sites, you’ll notice a certain public pride and display of Panda almost everywhere (awww). She has a way of making everything she vocalizes sound light and happy, even if it’s about death, heartbreak and war — so it only makes sense that she created this piece of art for kids to bounce around and sing along to. No longer on the path of deep life subjects, she’s replaced them with tracks about monsters, poop and kids. The music is creative, with bells, whistles, singing children, kazoos and all sorts of instruments you can only assume from albums like these and We Sing Silly Songs. This is a great album for young kids who either don’t understand words sung yet, or that you don’t mind contributing potty humor to. Who knows, you might catch yourself humming along to some ridiculous songs.

Rating: 3.5 records (out of 5) |

For a chance to have your band’s CD reviewed, mail it to: YES! Weekly, 5500 Adams Farm Lane, Suite 204, Greensboro, NC 27407. ATTN: Heather MacIntyre