steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion


"Half-Winter, Half-Spring in the Unreal City" CD


Genres: indie pop, indie rock

Jan 10 - 16 2005

One of the best parts of being a liberal-format music reviewer is the chance to discover wonderful self-released albums like this.  Marigold is the type of experience that every adventurous listener loves to come across; the band, consisting of principal songwriter/performer Brian Cassidy and a rotating cast of friends, is a sweet, melodic pop outfit that mixes pure creativity with a distinct accessibility.  Half-Winter, Half-Spring in the Unreal City is a very impressive album, filled with a solid, consistent track listing of successful songs.

Half-Winter's focus is on sweet, lush pop music, and its best songs fall under that category.  "Opening Song" and "Trying to Keep the Cicadas Away" are adorably catchy successes, while "These Are Your Complaints" is a monumental, impossibly infectious tune that will drop you into a state of pure bliss in no time.  Occasionally, Marigold experiments with some different styles: "Dia de los Muertos" and "Tequila Bomb" try out a more aggressive, energetic sound (the former is a tad flat), "Thanks Elsie" is a howling, emotional ode, and "Osaka Blues" is an instantly memorable blues-pop number with guest female vocals.  But amidst all the diversity, the key to this record is pure accessibility - few bands can even touch this type of extreme catchiness.  I love it, and you will too.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 11 tracks, distributed by the band, released 2004]