All-girl Brit quartet Electrelane were the soundtrack to my recent trip to Mexico. Not the whole thing, just the flights to and from. More specifically, I’m talking about their upcoming fourth album, No Shouts No Calls, which I think is their best yet.
It’s certainly better than 2005’s disappointing Axes, and feels like a natural progression from 2003’s enjoyable The Power Out. These ladies are masters of the two-chord jam, learning from the Velvets, Neu! and Stereolab before them. No Shouts No Calls is full of them, from the catchy first single "To the East" to the relatively rocking "Between the Wolf and the Dog" and organ-driven instrumental "Tram 21."
But my favorites are the pretty ones. The arpeggiated guitar on "At Sea" sounds to me like sunlight dappling through a forest at the magic hour, their charmingly unpolished vocals like something from A Charlie Brown Christmas. It’s dreamy and sad, and for some reason Peter Weir’s Picnic at Hanging Rock always runs through my mind when listening to it, or the equally mesmerizing "In Berlin." That’s what their music evokes to me, at least. It is as perfect a Sunday Morning Album as you’re likely to hear this year.
No Shouts No Calls is released May 8 and is currently available for pre-order and the online retailer of your choice. Meanwhile, Electrelane are also gearing up for a fairly major US tour. I wasn’t aware they had outgrown Bowery Ballroom, and I’m not excited about having to go to Irving Plaza (the Filmore East, I know) but I really don’t want to miss this show. Plus, they’re playing with The Blow.
05/14/07 Annandale, NY Bard College
05/15/07 New York, NY Irving Plaza
05/16/07 Boston, MA Paradise Rock Club / Lounge
05/18/07 Toronto, ON Lee’s Palace
05/19/07 Detroit, MI Magic Stick
05/22/07 Chicago, IL Empty Bottle
05/23/07 Minneapolis, MN Triple Rock Social Club
05/26/07 Quincy, WA Sasquatch Music Festival
05/27/07 Vancouver, BC Richard’s On Richards
05/28/07 Portland, OR Doug Fir Lounge
05/29/07 San Francisco, CA Great American Music Hall
05/31/07 West Hollywood, CA Troubadour
06/01/07 Berkeley, CA Greek Theatre*
06/02/07 Berkeley, CA Greek Theatre*
06/07/07 Saint Louis, MO Creepy Crawl
06/08/07 Pittsburgh, PA Andy Warhol Museum
06/09/07 Philadelphia, PA Johnny Brenda’s
*opening for Arcade Fire
The video for "To the East":