[Post-foetus]: The Fabric

Will Wiesenfeld's [Post-foetus] music might sound a little bit like The Postal Service's (Wiesenfeld, a twenty-year-old Californian, could even pass for Ben Gibbard's younger brother) but, in truth, his bedroom-styled electronic pop songs have more in common with the alluring mini-symphonies one associates with Brian Wilson (another of Wiesenfeld's influences surfaces during “Felix and the Mural” when a tiny snippet of Björk's voice appears). Exuberant, melodious, and uplifting, The Fabric presents ten set-pieces that combine vocal, string, piano, and guitar melodies with samples, electronic beats, and ambient textures into blissful tapestries of sound.

Wiesenfeld's classical training comes to the fore during the vibrant opener “Migration” when string melodies appear alongside piano, typewriter-like beat structures, and vocals (with Wiesenfeld singing about planets and other matters). With its soaring vocal harmonies, “Douse” can't help but remind one of The Beach Boys, and the dreamy evocation “Hill Views” does much the same in merging wordless vocal harmonies with beats and acoustic guitars. The airy and ethereal “Endearment Endure” stands out as a serenading setting of vocals, piano, and electronics, plus there are sparkling instrumentals (“Physicist”) and luscious synth-pop-and-techno fusions (“Kiki,” which is nicely enhanced by Georgia Lill's cello). As enjoyable as it is, the album isn't without a flaw or two—the otherwise palatable squiggly electropop of “All of the World,” for instance, is weakened by high-pitched vocals that chirp a bit too brightly—but missteps are few and far between on an album that generally registers as polished and fully-formed. Wiesenfeld apparently has lots more where The Fabric came from—word has it he's stockpiled four full-length albums, three EPs, plus hours of unreleased material—so one suspects that The Fabric won't be the last we hear from him.

February 2010