Painted Palms debut ‘Canopy EP’ is very much like freezing water: a bit bland, but precisely what is needed on a blisteringly hot summer day. The five-song collection feels specifically crafted for trips to the beach, parties on the beach, and driving home from the beach to go enjoy some time relaxing around a pool.
There is a song on here for any summer occasion, from discussing life at three in the morning (Great White) to aforementioned trips to the ocean (All Of Us) to watching it rain and wishing to do something (Water Hymn). However, the magic is purely seasonal, and listening to this album in weather less than 20C would feel wrong.
Each song blends into each other, but then has a distinct switch that gives each track a diverse flavor. Overall, there is a heavy MGMT/Matt&Kim/Yeasayer/Darren Hayes feel to the EP, but not so much that it feels derivative. Lyrically, it is highly repetitive and often simply vowel based vocalization (such as track number two, Water Hymn, where no discernable words are ever said), but when lyrics do appear, they are never clichéd and generally carry a feel of whimsy and nostalgia: “I’m falling asleep, watching the glow/walking alone on my way home/they come and they go these wandering dreams/drifting from me, falling asleep.”
There are lush and diverse instrumentation with good high and low balance, coupled with a strong, albeit unexceptional, vocal performance. Like their music, this two-piece from California/Louisiana also has aquatic properties; like a very large but shallow puddle, they cover a wide range of things without getting too deep and dirty. Start this album turning mid May, but when school bells ring it should be packed away for a year to make way for more appropriate fair.
Tags: caleb crowe, painted palms, Painted Palms - Canopy EP review, Reviews