Wednesday, January 10th, 2018

Rex Orange County – Loving Is Easy

Not for us it isn’t…


Julian Axelrod: A beaming, radiant shot of bliss with some ’70s harmonies as a chaser. If you could crystallize the first week of a relationship — when your texts are filled with heart emojis and you can’t stop gushing to your friends — into a song, it would sound exactly like this. Yet even as Rex revels in his new love, he knows it’s not guaranteed. “Loving is easy when everything’s perfect”: not very promising odds. This man has faced heartbreak before, and there’s a good chance he’ll face it again. But for now, everything is perfect. And you can’t blame the guy for grabbing a friend and singing about it.

Scott Mildenhall: Not a Hear’Say cover, but possibly Jamie Cullum: The Next Generation. It marks an upgrade in that respect, and it also benefits from not seeming to try and do or say anything overambitious. Snug within the timeless tradition of the listlessly bittersweet, barring the accent affectations, Rex Orange County doesn’t put a foot wrong.

Austin Brown: I’ll defer to one of the most infamous Robert Christgau record reviews, of Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water: “Melodic.”

Will Adams: The dreamy devotional of a typical Rhye song, sung with about an eighth of the commitment.

Alfred Soto: Look, I can’t help it — the drone is the English disease, no matter how well intended the message or resourceful the songwriting (the piano trills are especially cool). “Singing is easy” is the message.

Anthony Easton: I cannot figure out if I find his voice kind of awkwardly jangly, in a spending-too-much-time-listening-to-indiepop way, or slightly off-key and a little obnoxious. Every time I get close to being charmed, I become annoyed, and vice versa. 

Katherine St Asaph: Sophisti-swoon of the sort my peers are enamored with lately, at least until it succumbs to the vocal equivalent of a sinus infection.

Tim de Reuse: Rex’s voice is flat and tired, but there’s a calm honesty in his conversational tone that precisely conveys the quiet, patient hope that it takes to claw your mind out of an awful place. There isn’t a whole lot said here, but most 40-minute albums of sugar-high love songs fail to communicate anything as practical and worthwhile as this two-minute tune does.

Ryo Miyauchi: The more interesting line for Rex to tease out through “Loving Is Easy” would’ve been “you got me fucked me up,” an indication his world got rocked off its axis. Instead he rests on “everything is perfect,” and the piano pop reflects the happy-go-lucky glow of that lyric. The pieces fall together nicely, but the symmetry feels too comfortable. 

Crystal Leww: I would have been really into this in college, but we all have our shit to work through at that age.

Iain Mew: Being this chilled without falling into smug or boring is not easy, but the candied strings back up a winning naivety that keeps “Loving is Easy” sound carefree and out of time in a good way.

Reader average: [8] (1 vote)

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