As 2012 draws to a close, we'll be looking forward to the 2013 and spotlighting 13 Phoenix bands that will be making a mark on the Southwest throughout the new year. We wrote a bit about Of the Painted Choir's Lula in 2012, and felt the mini-review of the mini-EP deserved a little more shine, because the songs presented by the band have serious staying power.
There's a rustic sense of familiarity listening to Lula, the three-song debut EP by Phoenix indie folk combo Of the Painted Choir.
Composed of elements we're well antiquated with -- a little M. Ward mumble/slapback vocal here, a fuzzy British Invasion guitar lick there -- the collection doesn't sacrifice quality employing such recognizable signifiers.
Instead, Of the Painted Choir, comprising songwriter Frederick Huang, Darren Simoes (The Bled/Dead Western Plains), Phillip Hanna (Tugboat/Kinch), and John Blades (Dorsey) wring out every bit of emotion and joy from the indie pop format.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
"Lula, My Baby" bounces on a strident, anthemic beat, bolstered by Huang's lilting voice, while "A Spanish Mountain" is more restrained, that is until its ramshackle, ecstatic solo breakdown.
Bonus track "Mr. Bumblebee," with its whimsical Donovan/novelty jam vibe, feels unnecessary -- but mostly because the two tracks before it are so much better composed and executed.