Big Stir Records have made a consistent habit of backing those bands that the word ‘warm’ was invented for and this release by Stourbridge (UK) based Amoeba Teen is perhaps the best expression of such a label ethos to date.
This album is full of nuances within the individual tracks, but the whole can effectively be delineated into two aesthetics. Initially tracks such as Clementine (imagine R.E.M taking the ultimate pop pill), the garage-pop inflections of lead single Suit and Tie (see below) and the chiming The Golden Rail style pop of Coming (on Stronger) and Hickory Hill, all insist that the radiating 80/90’s guitar-pop brilliance should never be forgotten.
The second aesthetic truncates the ever present jangled inflections. Tracks such as Babycakes, Like a Hit to the Head, Everybody Wants and Save insists that the listener identifies references points such as latter era The Beach Boys, The Beatles and Village Green era The Kinks, whilst adding the slightest country essence that ensures a sense of originality that is far in excess of the usage of the country ingredient.
Perhaps this should be assigned to that glorious pile of music that you reach for when you have a quiet house and good coffee…you know the best type of music that you play when your time (and selection) is precious!