steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Anthony Rochester

"Music For in the Spaceship" CDR

Series Two

Genre: lo-fi, indie pop, bedroom pop

Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

November 2009

Always game for some sweet, breezy indie pop, Anthony Rochester's winsome concept album eked a smile out of me right from the opening lines of album opener (and best song) "I Love You Baby." Likewise, the twelve-track record's concept - music to describe and accompany Rochester's intergalactic journey/love-story - is a merrily quaint if outright cheesy one, ideally designed for non-cynical ears.

At twelve tracks, this bedroom effort risks being a bit too long for its own good, though an appreciable dose of hooks keeps many of these simple songs feeling fresh. Guitar, keyboards, bass, and vocals adorn Spaceship's elegant pop tidbits, with the occasional bit of strings and bells for added effect. The overall sound recalls the understated charm of the Kings of Convenience and Belle and Sebastian. The major knock on Spaceship is that several of its best songs sit at the front of the album, leaving the record's second half a tad arid. Consider the British Invasion influenced sound of "Did You Lose Weight?", with its distinct secret-agent vibe; it, along with quirky, Casio-drenched "Interplanetary Relationships Can Be Problematic at the Best of Times" and the already-mentioned opener, exhaust three of the disc's best songs within the first three tracks.

Still, the less consistently impressive second-half of Spaceship boasts enough recommendable fodder to keep the keen pop fan feeling sunny. Although "Rain" and "Mathematics" are undeniably bland filler, "Just Sigh and Move On" boasts a winning chorus and "Lipscombe Larder" is resplendent and original. Despite its flaws, Music for in the Spaceship deserves to be heralded as a charming work of bedroom pop that ranks among the Series Two label's best releases.

anthony rochester's myspace

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 12 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2009]