I’m all about seasonal music, so I’m getting especially fond of summery music right now. Aaron Cooper‘s self-titled singer/songwriter record is hitting the spot today. Cooper plays light, airy acoustic tunes that draw inspiration from classic songsmiths of yore (Paul Simon and the Kinks, particularly) without owing too much debt to anyone. Tunes like “Clown” and “Rat” could have been written then or now or in the future (I’m guessing, unless EDM wins and we all oomkchh oomkchh forever) and they’d fit right in: chipper acoustic strum, gentle melody, fun arrangements. It’s classic guitar popcraft.
None of the songs go longer than 2:38, which I admire. When you’ve got good ideas, you can string them out for a long time and make people sick of it, or you can leave ’em wanting more. Cooper does the latter. “Round Three” and “Songs about Birds #2: Dead Baby Bird” have memorable melodies that seem to deserve much more than the 1:30 that they are both allotted, but that sends you back to hit repeat. (And although that last title is sad and the song is a bit morbid, it still manages to be chipper and even a little touching.) Cooper likes tunes that deal with odd subject matter [“Come and Scrape My Brain (Off the Sidewalk)”], but the chill, smile-inducing mood rarely lets up. If you want to hear some light, fun, melodically classic tunes, Aaron Cooper should be on your to-hear list.