Luna Kafé e-zine  Luna Kafé record review
coverpic flag US - California - Full Moon 170 - 07/26/10

The Morning Benders
Big Echo
Rough Trade / Playground

Big Echo is Californian indie-pop band The Morning Benders' second full length album, after their critically acclaimed debut Talking Through Tin Cans (2008). It is produced by vocalist and song writer Christopher Chu and Chris Taylor (Grizzly Bear).

The sea side painted cover art on Big Echo implies that this is a summer album. Probably filled with sunny harmonies, lush surf moods and general retro pop delight. And the assumption is mostly true. Because Big Echo is all that, added a bitter sweet light-heartedness.

The album opens with the single "Excuses", an adoring piece of surf chamber pop. It is followed by the more waltzy "Promises", which with the line: "I can't helping thinking we grew up to fast" nails the album to the edge of romantic melancholy. But never turning too sentimental, as does neither of the other tracks on Big Echo.

What "Promises", which by all means is a perfectly charming tune, has in common with the rest of the album is a sense of ambition that almost overwhelms the charm. Not so much in songs like the more stripped down "Wet Cement", "All Day Day Light" and the closure "Sleeping in". But it lingers in them as well, the not so pleasant scent of stylised fun. Not that 'stylised' is a fault, per se, but on Big Echo it is disturbingly alienating, even if it gets better when you listen with headphones. And that is a fault in such, as this is supposed to be happily shared music.

So, summarized, The Morning Benders have with Big Echo delivered a pretty good echo of a great summer album.

Copyright © 2010 Aslaug O Klausen e-mail address

If you wish to print this review, we have a printer friendly version.

    If you like vinyl we recommend a visit to VinylKnut's Loft listing hundreds of collectable items for sale, like:
  • Omar Rodriguez Lopez & John Frusciante: S/T (LP 2012 LTD 1000)
  • 3rd And The Mortal: In This Room (2xLP 1997/Re 2017 LTD 100)
  • Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.: Univers Zen Ou De Zero A Zero (4xLP 2003)
  • Chrissy Zebby Tembo & Ngozi Family: My Ancestors (LP 1974/Re 2012500 LTD 500)
  • Kaizers Orchestra: 250 Prosent (LP 2008)
  • Mona & Maria: My Sun (LP 2013 LTD 100)
  • Monstrance: S/T (2xCD 2007)
  • Richard Skelton: Landings (2xLP+CD 2009)
  • Van Halen: Deluxe (6xLP BOX 2015)
  • Walflower Complextion: S/T (2xLP 199? LTD 450)

We also have 416 other articles/reviews of artists from US, California in our archive:

© 2011 Luna Kafé