One of the best aspects of Danny Rowland and Jen Weidl’s synth-pop is that it isn’t trying to be adorable. Sure, the songs are sugary-sweet and laced with extraordinarily catchy melodies, but there is absolutely no pretension getting in the way. Transmittens is nothing more than two people in a bedroom recording little pop songs for the fun of it. Jangly guitars and drum machines accompany the synthesizers on the duo’s first proper release. And despite the upbeat nature of most of the songs, there’s a certain sadness lurking underneath, like most great indie pop. Rowland’s warbling falsetto and Weidl’s gorgeously soft-spoken delivery come together for some surprisingly excellent harmonies, notably on the choruses of standouts “My Heart’s in the Dumpster” and “Up All Night.” Our Dreams draws influence from a wide range of indie forebears: The drum machine and synthesizers are reminiscent of Casiotone for the Painfully Alone, the guitars and vocals of the Field Mice, and the lyrical content of Beat Happening. This duo’s charm, however, is something all its own.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 29, 2009