The Caribbean: The Go From Tactical / The Beverly Boys

With its frosty, ‘coke-bottle-clear' vinyl and its canary yellow label, the Caribbean's 7-inch teaser for its upcoming Populations album charms as much on visual grounds as it does aural. Michael Kentoff and company again beguile with their eccentric avant-pop style on “The Go From Tactical” and the non-album cut “The Beverly Boys.” Opening unassumingly with Kentoff's soft vocal purring over acoustic guitar strums, “The Go From Tactical” escalates heavenward when a gorgeous hook jumpstarts a silken chorus (“Pick up my sound signal to you…”) that's sweetened by a melodica's lovely hum. “The Beverly Boys” is a little less ornate and distinctive but doesn't stray dramatically from the band's usual laid-back languor. Kudos to Hometapes for including a colour insert that displays the songs' lyrics which are, like the group's previous output, appealingly oblique.

August 2007