The Ruby Suns
(03.2008, Sub Pop)
Verdict = Sunny Experimental Folk
I’m pretty hip to smiling and to tropical vacations so it has been pretty easy for me to fall for The Ruby Suns’ Sea Lion. Sporting an addictive, island folk/pop with sublime major chord progressions, the band’s second album and Sub Pop debut is a wonderful treat. The band is bursting with melodies and unique song structures as if they had discovered a secret treasure trove of awesomeness. My immediate impression was to compare The Ruby Suns to The Annuals, and while Sea Lion has much of the spirit of The Annuals debut it also dips into much more psychedelic territory in the vein of Caribou and Animal Collective. Those comparisons are probably running rampant by now. They are good ones though. As much as I hate to compare bands, being in the company of Caribou, Animal Collective and The Annuals is a big time compliment. And as with the afore mentioned bands, The Ruby Suns maintain a signature sound that is all their own. Breezy acoustic guitars, island chorals, bouncy synths, tinkering bells and kitchen sink drums come together in a delicious pot of steamy, world infected pop. The record feels absolutely celebratory and is perfectly suited for ushering in the sun in even the most hopeless of weather situations. With absolutely no funds for a worthwhile spring break, listening to Sea Lion is the only substitute.