Thursday, September 15, 2011

Cloud Eleven - Cloud Eleven - 1999

Rising from the ashes of the L.A. retro-pop group Jiffipop, Cloud Eleven is the meisterwork of Rick Gallego, who wrote all but one of the tunes on here and plays almost all the instruments. There's a 60s retro vibe, all swirly and psychedelic, with a strong pop base to everything on here, recalling Sgt. Pepper era pop pastiches. Highlights are numerous, but "Spiral (Come Way Down)," "Tokyo Aquarium," "Take Control," "Rainbow Station" stand out as lush, vibrant tunes with production values equally as forceful. Most clever songwriting award goes to "Look Of Sky," a pastiche of Left Banke lyrics and titles inspired by that group's leader Michael Brown. Light, trippy power pop that really hits the spot, this is one charmer of an album.   -AMG

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