Monday, March 8th, 2010

Owl City – Vanilla Twilight

What’s a guy gotta do to catch a break round here, eh?…


Martin Skidmore: At its best, this approaches the delicate loveliness of Air, the lightly autotuned weak voice at least sounding reasonably sweet, and the electro music being very pretty. I wish it had a memorable tune, but generally I like this.

Hillary Brown: Pretty, twinkly shopping music, and that sounds like more of a denigration than it is. It would be hard and cranky to hate this focus on melody and pleasant sounds, but I’m sure some folks will find a way.

Matt Cibula: I know we’re all supposed to be taking pop music at face value and without preconceptions here, but all I can think of is the e.e. cummings line “there is some shit i will not eat.”

Doug Robertson: When we reviewed “Fireflies” on here, I said that if he stopped being so blatant about his influences there might be something interesting going on, but I now sadly realise that he doesn’t so much wear his influences on his sleeve as have a wardrobe made up entirely of neon t-shirts bearing the slogan “I HEART THE POSTAL SERVICE”.

Iain Mew: Weirdly, despite every change from the Postal Service model being very much for the worse, the mere fact that there’s a little more distance than “Fireflies” had makes me more sympathetic to this. There’s some enjoyable prettiness in there, if only it wasn’t so overegged and laden down with terrible, embarassing lyrics.

Michaelangelo Matos: “Pour me a dose of atmosphere”! Can you believe this fucking kid? From level of inspiration to number of twinkling synthesizers, it’s like margarine smeared on frosting.

Alfred Soto: Almost as good as “I look at my hands and feel sad,” which the Ben Gibbard clone sings like he’s never owned a pair of hands. “As many times as I blink I’ll think of you tonight,” he promises over piano tinkle. That’s 22,000 times on average, people. Get a hobby, guy, that doesn’t involve starting a band.

Chuck Eddy: The one thing I’ll say about the whining here is that at least it doesn’t subvert itself by revving up into lame-ass pop-punk, as countless bands with similar outloooks but deluded about their inability to rock out have done in recent years. In other words, it has the fortitude to rely on just its wimpiness. Still sucks bigtime, natch, but I’ve gotta respect Mr. Owl for that.

Edward Okulicz: Owl City don’t really exist do they? This is just a Hellogoodbye song slowed down and released opportunistically to capitalise on the baffling success of “Fireflies”, surely… though as the comparisons to better bands shows, this isn’t entirely without artistry – there are pretty hooks and attractively bad lyrics, but the trills and chimes of the music are not flattering to them – like “Fireflies” it’s sugary rather than flavoursome.

Alex Ostroff: Stars kiss you, he misses you, sad rhymes with bad, and blink rhymes with think. Despite light jazzy touches that might have some redeeming value, there is but one thing keeping this from a [0]: I’ve heard the entire album and know for a fact that the worst is yet to come. (Just wait until you all hear “Dental Care”!)

Additional Scores

Pete Baran: [2]
Anthony Easton: [7]

8 Responses to “Owl City – Vanilla Twilight”

  1. The song title efficiently describes Owl City’s music for me. I bet Matos can’t wait for his next single, “Margarine Smeared on Frosting.”

  2. Has “vanilla” ever signified anything cool in any context?

  3. “The Y is for yesss! – ooh! – vanillah!”

  4. I bet Vanilla Fudge were considered cool for a couple weeks. (Plus, I just bought this snowman over the weekend for $2 at a garage sale who raps “Ice Ice Baby” when you squeeze his hand.) (His bling says “Ice” on it.)

  5. I really wish I had found the time to give this a zero.

  6. good work everyone

  7. I miss Vanilla Coke.

  8. cosine