Articles tagged with exlovers

Keep your secrets to yourself

Photo shoot exasperation
Before now, I’ve only posted tracks with downloadable MP3s. But it’s 2011 and streaming is totally hot right now, so I’ve decided to start posting Soundcloud streams as well.

Here’s a track I wanted to post before, but it was only available as a stream. It’s called “Blowing Kisses” and it’s the latest single from exlovers. It’s a dreamy rocker, with fuzzed-out guitars paired with whispered, harmonized vocals. And while that description makes it sound like a shoegaze song, it’s really more Britpop than noise rock.

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exlovers don’t wanna fall in love

Normally, I would consider Chris Isaak‘s “Wicked Game” to be pretty high up on the list of songs that no artist should ever attempt to cover. Not only is it overplayed, but its solemn lyrics and schmaltzy delivery make it hard to pull of without seeming like a Vegas lounge singer.

If anyone is up to the task, however, it’s exlovers, who cut a version of the song during their latest demo session. The group has just the right amount of sweet sincerity to pull off the dramatic minor key arpeggios and soaring falsettos. With its dreamy jangle and delicate boy-girl harmonies, the song isn’t too much of a stretch from the group’s usual Britpop stylings (especially due to exlovers’ thick British accents).

mp3: “Wicked Game”

Also check out the gorgeous video for “You Forget So Easily,” the title track of the band’s recent EP. The beautifully shot clip shows the band playing in a forest clearing, surrounded by greenery and a variety of household items. With its soft lighting and pastoral setting, it’s the perfect accompaniment to the band’s lush sound.

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Classic Britpop from exlovers

exlovers - You Forget So Easily
When I ripped exlovers‘ debut EP, You Forget So Easily, onto my iTunes, its genre came up as “unclassifiable.” Describing a group’s style in such terms might sound intriguing, but in the case of exlovers, it’s not even close to accurate. There is no shortage of labels to pin on the band’s music, and anyone with even a basic knowledge of indie rock over the past 25 years could draw plenty of easy comparisons to similar artists. The folksy strumming and whispered vocals of “New Years Day” sound so close to Elliott Smith that some listeners will probably wonder if the song was originally an outtake from the Either/Or sessions. Considering that it opens with the lyric “The day was lost / In a drunken haze,” exlovers don’t seem to be making any attempt to disguise the similarity.

Mostly, however, the five-song collection sounds like quintessential Britpop. This is especially apparent on “Just a Silhouette,” which begins with gentle arpeggios before breaking out into a breezy groove laden with shimmering guitar jangle. Fittingly, given the inescapable Britishness of the track, the singing is inflected with a thick London accent. The title track displays a similar set of influences, with dreamy, androgynous vocals floating atop a warm bed of acoustic and electric guitar strumming.

mp3: “Just a Silhouette”

It may be derivative, but rather than coming off as a pastiche, exlovers sound like the real deal. The band members doubtless grew up on a steady diet of the Smiths, the Stone Roses and Blur, so You Forget So Easily is simply a case of them playing what they know. “Unclassifiable” it ain’t, but the EP is a satisfying dose of classic Britpop.
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I bet they’re still sleeping together

Is is the Cure? Is it the Smiths? No, it’s exlovers, whose new single, “Photobooth,” evokes the crystalline jangle of ’80s Brit-rock. The chord progression is a close approximation of “Just Like Heaven,” with subtle lead licks mingling with hypnotic open-chord strumming. The vocals, when they enter, are sung in tight harmony, and recall the shoegaze androgyny of My Bloody Valentine. It’s a bit of a pastiche, but that isn’t such a problem when it comes to a song as catchy as this.

“Photobooth” was released as a double A-side single with “Weightless,” which sounds a bit like a dream pop take on Nirvana‘s “Heart-Shaped Box.” Another tune, “Just a Silhouette,” is available here for the cost of an e-mail address.

The band is entering the studio soon to record an EP with Stephen Street (who produced Strangeways, Here We Come).
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