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The Elected
Me First
Sub Pop Records
www.theelected.com


Hailing from Los Angeles, The Elected have embraced their home states' sun-soaked sound and made it their own with a pleasant combination of coastal country lingering above a psychedelic undercurrent. Unlike comparable California pop-fueled-folk acts Rooney or The Thrills with their fun-loving point of view on the Los Angeles experience, The Elected prove to be a bit more cynical about breathing the smog of the city. Formed by multi-instrumentalists Blake Sennett and drummer Jason Boesel from Rilo Kiley, The Elected mirror the wonderful balance of beautiful indie rock and subtle country of their roots while adding new layers which separate their two projects distinctively.

Blake croons with bereavement in his whispering falsetto to unambiguous narratives of love and loss. The band injects synthesized drum beats, swirling soundscapes and quirky samples in nearly every track, adding a novel twist on alternative country, while simultaneously updating their '60's hallucinogenic influences. The Pet Sounds days of Brian Wilson, Sgt. Pepper's Beatles and Freewheeling Dylan all come through loud and clear on the recording. The Fab Four's acid-pop is respectively plagiarized on "A Time For Emily" with a "Penny Lane"-esque trumpet solo, immediately followed by the waltzing cadence of "For The Benefit of Mr. Kite" on the carnival-esque "Don't Get Your Hopes Up." An extra twangy mindset is manifested on both "7 September 2003" and "Waves (The Time You're Awake)" with the tang of a lap-steel. The unifying element of the bands' essence are the angelic harmonies of Blake and Mike Bloom. These mellifluousness harmonics blend especially well on the icy ballad "Don't Blow It" with help from Azure Ray's Orenda Fink and fellow Rilo Kiley bandmate Jenny Lewis.

Me First is arguably one of the best debuts Sub Pop has ever issued. Bursting at the seams with irony and introspection the disc is utterly original with just subtle hints of familiarity. The Elected have recorded a near perfect record.

-Tony Engelhart

Track Listing:

1. 7 September 2003
2. Greetings in Braille
3. My Baby's a Dick
4. A Time for Emily
5. Don't Get Your Hopes Up
6. Waves
7. The Miles 'Til Home
8. Go On
9. C'mon Mom
10. A Response to Greed
11. Don't Blow It
12. British Columbia



 

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