Cate Le Bon – “Wonderful” (Singles Going Steady)

Being nuts offers an opportunity for Cate LeBon and the band to be creative. It’s wonderful.

Emmanuel Elone: For some reason, I can’t help but think of Bjork whenever I hear Cate Le Bon’s voice. In some sense, they are similar artists, incorporating post-modern artsy flairs to otherwise dull and generic pop music. “Wonderful” continues on this journey of strangeness, with wonky rock instrumentation, abstract and deranged lyrics, and a strange yet pleasant vocal inflection. It can come off as being strange for the sake of being strange, but that’s fine when the music is as interesting as this song is. Cate Le Bon’s new song definitely lives up to its name, though, that’s for sure. [7/10]

Steve Horowitz: The spirit of serious goofiness returns with a female voice and a foreign accent. The tubas squeal in delight! The track is great fun as it celebrates the wonder of being wonderful. Being nuts offers an opportunity for LeBon and the band to be creative. It’s wonderful. [8/10]

Pryor Stroud: In “Wonderful”, Cate Le Bon sings with an absent-minded yet sprightly voice that calls to mind a twee-pop Nico decked-out in technicolor. Throughout the track, stalactite guitar, lolling xylophone, and epileptic percussion push Le Bon into a dream-like haze that dissipates just as you begin to notice its intricacies — a fact that pushes you to listen a few more times and, resultantly, let this haze drift over you as well. [6/10]

Chris Ingalls: I’m definitely picking up a late-period Beefheart vibe in the music, maybe just a smidgen of Pere Ubu as well. Vocally, well, someone’s definitely been listening to a lot of Nico. It makes for a curious combination, and definitely weird enough to get my attention. Perhaps a little too self-consciously weird, but with musical influences respectable enough for your typical music snob to fawn over. Which is a good thing, trust me. [7/10]

Morgan Y. Evans: It’s nice to experience a song without knowing everything about the artist in an age where it is so easy to find out background info and categorize things quickly. Something gets lost and we don’t “experience” the music as much, perhaps. As it turns out, Cate Le Bon is Welsh so I am predisposed to like her, but I found out after the fact (post-disposed?). This song (and corresponding one note video) is fun and quirky without “trying to hard”. It kind of sounds like Laetitia Sadier fronting Pavement, which of course is pretty fantastic even conceptually. [8/10]

Chad Miller: Goofy and fun, “Wonderful” is such a refreshing sound, and it’s nice that it doesn’t overstay it’s welcome. The lyrics are really clever, and the guitar part is especially cool as well. [8/10]

SCORE: 7.33

Cate Le Bon‘s new album Crab Day releases April 15th via Drag City.

Le Bon describes the new album thusly: “Crab Day was lovingly formed in the mouth of the Pacific Ocean, as it quietly mocked us with its magnitude. It’s the sound of the ‘accidentally on purpose’ coming together of the right people at precisely the right time in an environment that furnished and fueled the abandonment we felt effortlessly. It’s a coalition of inescapable feelings and fabricated nonsense, each propping the other up. Crab Day is an old holiday. Crab Day is a new holiday. Crab Day isn’t a holiday at all.”