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Over the Atlantic

Junica

(Carpark; US: 18 Sep 2006; UK: 18 Sep 2006)

New Zealand laptop/guitar pop duo Over the Atlantic are going to draw Postal Service comparisons and fair enough—they sound alike—though Over the Atlantic put more meat on that bedroom sound with the inclusion of often fuzzy guitars. It’s not a bad formula, and results in some swelling moments of real feeling, but most of the time the duo’s songs seem to meander by without leaving much of an impression. “Jess” is one of those successes, all laid-back organic electronic sounds and an easy-sitting melody; “Kevin Shields”(more Lost in Translation-era than My Bloody Valentine) eventually expands to a larger (yes, Shields-inspired) tremolo guitar sound. When, on “I Cannot Believe”, they build in elements such as polyphonic voices, fuzzy guitars and a layered keyboard accompaniment the wall of bright sound is almost overwhelming—a high point. The band could do well to make more of the accent, as they do towards the end of “The Starsign”; it’s charming, and brings a welcome quirkiness to the otherwise straightforward sound.

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Dan Raper has been writing about music for PopMatters since 2005. Prior to that he did the same thing for his college newspaper and for his school newspaper before that. Of course he also writes fiction, though his only published work is entitled "Gamma-secretase exists on the plasma membrane as an intact complex that accepts substrates and effects intramembrane cleavage". He is currently studying medicine at the University of Sydney, Australia.


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