Carrie: 1981
Static Discos

Carrie (Laura Becerra) shifts sonic gears in her second release 1981. The folk dimension of her debut Honey Blue Star is rarely heard with Carrie instead embracing a sparkling electro-pop style that goes down very easily indeed. That shift is immediately heard when cascades of synthesizers chime ever so sweetly in the pretty overture “Take One” and when Carrie and new member Pelvis (Alex Gallo) share the vocal lead in the exuberant “Feeding Little Dogs,” hers all candy-coloured smooth and his lower and slightly rougher. The ballad “Stumble” exudes the kind of innocent pop character one hears in Caroline's splendid material, and the wistful melodica melody that appears is a lovely complement to Becerra's whisper (that Caroline connection suggests itself even more strongly when the metronomic tranquility of “Japanese Coffee” appears shortly thereafter). Her voice is even softer during the lilting ballad “The Wrong Way,” which nicely weaves stately piano patterns and electric guitar peals into a four-minute dreamscape, while the entrancing “Srita.Cometa” briefly moves the album into shoegaze territory. Lest one forgets her Mexican roots, “Pollock” closes the album in a simple vocals-and-guitar style not unlike Honey Blue Star with Becerra singing in her native tongue. The set falters only once, when the folk-blues stylings and synthetic treatments in “Road Season” fail to mesh convincingly. Albums like 1981 can verge on twee but Carrie's minimal electro-pop manages to come off sounding innocent but not sickly-sweet.

May 2008