Sleepover Camp

Wide-eyed pop tunes with worn-out cassette production

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Love Is All
Nine Times That Same Song
What's Your Rupture?

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If Nine Times That Same Song, the debut full- length from Sweden's Love Is All, is a 30-minute dance party, it's a Friday-night sleepover—five friends bouncing around a bedroom, up way past their bedtime, giddy and delirious and completely uninhibited. And if there are posters on the wall, they're likely of Madness, the English Beat, the Ronettes, Duran Duran, Le Tigre, and maybethe Yeah Yeah Yeahs, but certainly not of Franz Ferdinand or the Killers. The album's leadoff track, "Talk Talk Talk Talk," with its screeching saxophone, bouncing basslines, rapid-fire high-hat taps, jagged guitar, and quirky, high-pitched yelps (courtesy of lead singer–keyboardist Josephine Olausson), begins like a jubilant street fight between ska and disco and ends in a joining of forces. Herky-jerky songs like "Ageing Had Never Been His Friend" and "Used Goods" veer into new wave territory, while "Turn the Radio Off" and "Felt Tip" slow down, showcase Olausson's tender vocals and thoughtful lyrics, and leave you wondering if she's Björk's long-lost little sister. Production-wise, the CD sounds like a worn-out cassette—there's a thick, lo-fi haze and each player is set back in the mix. But instead of seeming like a cop-out, it's endearing—it suggests a hesitant confidence, an uncertainty of how likable their music actually is. All 10 songs on Nine Times beg for repeated listens—and LIA's bedroom is about to get really crowded.

 
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