Nice Place to Be
Buried in the recesses of each of our memories are images of wallflowers at those seventh and eighth grade dances. You know, one who is not wearing too much makeup or too revealing an outfit and considers it best to simply smile at her girlfriends' comments, rather than giggle or guffaw. The same could be said for "Friends," the opening track of this album. In this age of media over-saturation, it's refreshing to slip a disc into a stereo and not feel forced to be dazzled with glitzy production or self-consciously crafted big choruses, nor enticed with show-offy and/or sexy female vocals. Even when the plaintively sung "Friends" opens up for guitarist Henning Ohlenbusch to lay down a solo, the musician simply eases the listener into a feedback-rub, and we breathe a sigh of release just as singer Lesa Bezo does until the third verse arrives and she resumes her elegantly lovely ode to the simple value of companionship. "Snow Day" follows, a charming, amiable pop gem that could grace a million play-lists. Our consciousness is now relaxed enough to admire our wallflower for her sweet nature and the only thing better than enjoying time with friends is the chance to play hooky from work with your sweetie, in order to "Curl up by the fireplace and watch a movie, something that we have seen too many times already so we can doze off and dream of days just like the one today." By the time the final track on the album fades out with a "la-la-la" chorus, supported by a nylon string guitar and melodica in waltz time, we're happily enchanted and can slip this disc into the racks of our CD collections knowing that it'll be there when we want to treat ourselves. For it's part, the spine winks back, with it's playful font (fawnt?) nestling into a yellow and green background. These Fawns are bashful creatures but they are beautifully at peace with their surroundings and this musical world, with it's gentle hummable melodies, strummy midtempo grooves, and sparkling pop gleam is simply "A Nice Place To Be."