14 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Not for headbangers, alt-rockers, or any distant cousins, The Sea and Cake makes grown-up pop music and like other streamlined, low-key indie-rockers (think the Shins, or Noah and the Whale), TS&C’s music feels effortless — pure and unfettered by modern distractions and trappings. The end result is a sly, engaging blend of sophisticated yet uncomplicated jazz structures and layers of breezy pop instrumentation. Sam Prekop’s breathy, casual voice veers from being oddly seductive to just plain pleasant, and it all feels as good as playing hooky at the beach. The sublime, yet tightly controlled, interplay between Prekop’s and Archer Prewitt’s guitars is quite grand, especially on the quietly rocking  “Ariel,” the faintly schizo “New Schools,” and the propulsive, energetic “Car Alarm,” but you almost don’t notice; the band employ both humility and understatement, which is one reason they’re so darn likeable. They just do what they do, and it usually results in finely crafted music that is criminally underrated and under-appreciated. It’s not all guitar love, either: gurgling synths sprinkle a little magic into tracks like the playful “CMS Sequence” and “Weekend,” and twinkling steel drums and piano shine on “Mirrors.” The last two tracks here are bonus tracks. Satisfied newbies should seek out two bands that sprouted TS&C, Shrimp Boat and the Coctails.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Not for headbangers, alt-rockers, or any distant cousins, The Sea and Cake makes grown-up pop music and like other streamlined, low-key indie-rockers (think the Shins, or Noah and the Whale), TS&C’s music feels effortless — pure and unfettered by modern distractions and trappings. The end result is a sly, engaging blend of sophisticated yet uncomplicated jazz structures and layers of breezy pop instrumentation. Sam Prekop’s breathy, casual voice veers from being oddly seductive to just plain pleasant, and it all feels as good as playing hooky at the beach. The sublime, yet tightly controlled, interplay between Prekop’s and Archer Prewitt’s guitars is quite grand, especially on the quietly rocking  “Ariel,” the faintly schizo “New Schools,” and the propulsive, energetic “Car Alarm,” but you almost don’t notice; the band employ both humility and understatement, which is one reason they’re so darn likeable. They just do what they do, and it usually results in finely crafted music that is criminally underrated and under-appreciated. It’s not all guitar love, either: gurgling synths sprinkle a little magic into tracks like the playful “CMS Sequence” and “Weekend,” and twinkling steel drums and piano shine on “Mirrors.” The last two tracks here are bonus tracks. Satisfied newbies should seek out two bands that sprouted TS&C, Shrimp Boat and the Coctails.

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