Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Album Review :: Cerise - Smoke Screen Dreams


Smoke Screen Dreams

June 24 2016 (Psychic Cats)


Words: Alison Mack

Produced by Joseph Arthur and mixed by Matt Boynton (Bat For Lashes/MGMT), this debut long-player from LA by way of Chicago songstress Cerise has been in the making for a few years, but you can never hurry a good thing, and this collection of sultrily delivered 80s dreampop songs is that.

There's a quality of otherworldlyness about her textured layers of sound and ethereal vocal that echo Hope Sandoval. From the opening title track of floating vocals built around jangly guitars, you will probably know whether the following eight are going to be enough for your aural palette or not.

The more bass heavy ‘Shades In Shade’ with smooth vocals and layered effects is followed by the more beaty 'To Go Away' with its psych/grunge tinged components. ’Mourning Birds’, a sub-two-minuter, places Cerise's seductive voice prevails over a simple opening and sits on the bridge between the record's two highpoints, 'You Like Night' and '‘St. Nick’. The former is a slightly more sombre affair though maintains a foot-tapping beat against ample guitar riffs, while the latter is a hypnotic essence of percussion and tribal-esque drums that ebbs and flows on a laid-back instrumental bed. A promising debut work.

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