Motopony have received well deserved acclaim and attention in the US after appearing at SXSW, and several nods in various breakthrough lists after the release of their eponymous debut album in 2011. Less well known on these shores, this charming five track EP should bring them to the attention of those whose interest is peaked by a broad range of Americana.
When the biography mentions Seattle a certain pressure to uphold a code of rock cool should apply – but you're left with the impression that these are six musicians who play a style of effortlessly dreamy indie pop because it’s what they enjoy – and they are damn good at it. Radio friendly opener ‘Get Down (Come Up)’ should provide airplay and, while sounding like it would be at home in any of your American TV Box sets, is a well produced and accomplished piece of music with an earworm of a chorus.
‘About A Song’ is the best demonstration of Daniel Blue’s absorbing vocal, can be filed next to Death Cab and has a touch of Pixies about it too. The next two songs, ‘Buffalo Medicine’ and ‘She Is Spirit’, share a structure where the singer builds up to a lose yourself vocal, while surrounded by ambient and occasionally psychedelic harmonies. It’s very clever stuff and the producer allows all six members their moment to showcase their talented wares. The EP concludes with a spoken word Eels-esque piece of storytelling, seemingly about a surreal night out, surrounded by a hip-hop beat. It’s this diversity and ability to surprise that leaves you impatient for the full album release next spring.
Idle Beauty is out now via Entertainment One Music.
James Van Praag