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The Sea the Sea

Love We Are We Love

(Self-released; US: 25 Feb 2014; UK: 21 Apr 2014)

A Hit-Or-Miss Debut

The Sea the Sea is a folkie duo consisting of Chuck E. Costa and Mira Stanley, who perform songs built around their vocals, guitar, banjo and percussion to the extent that their songs sound sonically full and engaging. This is not to say that all the tunes on debut album Love We Are We Love are standouts; opening track “Re: Blah” is fairly dull, and follow-up “Guess It Was” is equally downtempo, gentle, and forgettable.


Not until “Love We Are Love” does the listener get an idea of the pair’s abilities, with their looping vocals and a degree of urgency heretofore lacking. (It would have been great as an opening track.) After this, things pick up a bit, with “In the Dark” and “If I Go (Chicago)” both possessing a compelling momentum. It’s hit or miss throughout, though, with much of the record’s back half sounding lethargic and listless.

Rating:

DAVID MAINE is a novelist and essayist. His books include The Preservationist (2004), Fallen (2005), The Book of Samson (2006), Monster, 1959 (2008) and An Age of Madness (2012). He has contributed to The Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, Esquire.com and NPR.com, among other outlets. He is a lifelong music obsessive whose interests range from rock to folk to hip-hop to international to blues. He currently lives in western Massachusetts, where he works in human services. Catch up with his blog, The Party Never Stops, at davidmaine.blogspot.com, or become his buddy on Facebook (or Twitter or Google+ or whatever you prefer) to keep up with reviews and other developments.


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