By Steve Weinstein
By Bryan Bierman
By Lindsey Rhoades
By Chaz Kangas
By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Jena Ardell
By Jesse Sendejas Jr.
By Katherine Turman
Naturally they're not gonna sing about a Bush-sponsored guerrilla war or the ooshy-gooshy qualities of real adult sex. In the Clientele's little England, grad students holding hands carry the weight of the ages. Like their spiritual forebearsFelt, Galaxie 500, Sarah Recordsthey come from a world where singing out of tune means purity and puppy dog drum-tumbles are rhythmic effervescence.
The Violet Hour, their first album qua album, represents a progression of sorts from their singles. The lyrical lexicon remains locked down (rain, walking, driving, walking through rain, driving through rain), but the new songs are more, uh, considered than the previous sun-ripened four-track doodles.
The more involved the songs get, the more ethereal they end up, and not always to the good. But indie pop has never managed to add much to the canon of "great songs." At its best indie grabs a moodusually some variation on the poutand runs with it, sometimes for years. When a band does post-collegiate longing as good as the Clientelesmeared clichés so potent they sound instantly familiarI couldn't give a butterfly's ass if they recorded the same damn album for a decade.