THE HARVEY GIRLS The Prisoners of Candy Island (Circle Into Square)
Someone help me out here: If a band says, “Oh, we play bubblegum pop,” are you going to be expecting sprawling, eclectic jungles of drum loops, vocal samples and synthesized swirls? Yet in the weird and wonderful alternate universe that The Harvey Girls inhabit, that’s exactly what they mean. It’s not like someone was trying to be ironic either: the songs on this five-track EP entitled The Prisoners of Candy Island are entirely irony free.
Instead, in their own kooky, adorable way, Hiram Lucke and his wife Melissa Rodenbeek have successfully married the melodic, cheerful sunshine of pop acts like the Beach Boys and the Shangri-Las with the freeform eclecticism of Captain Beefheart. Top that off with bold experimental production that takes a leaf from the book of hip-hop crew De La Soul, and you have yourself a smashing formula.
Don’t just take my word for it: Check out second track Tickle, and try not to fall madly into the love-pit that the hooky piano riffs and synthesizer touches dig. Or the delicious bleep-bloop jangle of Song XLIII (My Roman numerals aren’t all that great, so I won’t bother messing around with trying to figure the numbers.) This is bubblegum pop, all right, but with the gum firmly stretched out and blown to its limits, until everything explodes in a burst of juicy flavour. Tasty.
(Samuel C Wee)
Download The Prisoners of Candy Island for free at the Official Site below.