Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

The Alpine-On Feel Trips

November 1, 2006

thealpineBand: The Alpine

Album Name: On Feel Trips

Best Element: Consistently giddy singalongs

Genre: Power-pop

Website: www.thealpine.dk

Label: Gun Records, Supersonic Records, Sony

Band E-mail: theband@thealpine.dk

The Alpine’s major label debut revels in the inherent giddy fun of power-pop. On Feel Trips is practically engineered to be sung along to, and whatever genre the band’s playing with on each individual track, they make sure to include at least one enormous hook. Fueling this drive is the interaction between the boy/girl vocals of Peter Boesen and Ida Strand.

Three songs in particular (“Mondays Always Look The Same”, “No I In Team” which appropriately name checks Supertramp and album-closer “Adrian”) are full-out, cast-of-hundreds, singalong anthems, the kind of which most modern music is sorely missing. In between are a number of surprises. While the band’s sound alternates between influences of glam, synth-pop and seventies AOR rock, it also manages to be rather fluid. Take “Crazy Glue,” for instance: an odd almost-country ballad that morphs suddenly into what sounds like a Broadway show tune. It’s a far cry from the disco funk of “Sham On” or the Kasabian-meets-Anastacia rock of “High Underground,” yet it completely works because it’s irresistibly catchy. Same deal for “Iceland” and “Trigger,” both of which wear their eighties influence on their sleeves.

On Feel Trips may not be incredibly deep lyrically, but who says that all music has to be? It would be easy to write the Alpine off as a guilty pleasure, a choice label for bands who make it their mission to write unabashed pop music, but the album’s too good, too consistent to be dismissed. A-

Key Tracks: Mondays Always Look The Same, No I In Team, Trigger

-Nick James

jamesn65@gmail.com

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Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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