Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Case File #17: "Wall Poster Star"

The Brunettes
"Wall Poster Star"
Structure & Cosmetics

The need to know: New Zealand indie pop duo The Brunettes use quirk as its lyrical stock and trade, with handfuls of twee sweetness and the heart of 60s girl groups hung proudly on its sleeve. Although Jonathan Bree and Heather Mansfield  joined forces in 1998, it's only been in the latter aughts that they've made their way to the U.S. of A, opening for The Shins, Rilo Kiley, The Postal Service and Broken Social Scene. Their first album to have a domestic release in the U.S, and via seminal indie Sub Pop, was 2007's Structure & Cosmetics, followed by 2009's Paper Dolls, which was self-released by the group's own Lil' Chief Records. 

Why it's worthy: Reconsiling teenage idealism with the realities of relationships and love, "Wall Poster Star" encompasses everything that The Brunettes do well. Mansfield and Bree's girl/boy vocals play off one another to perfection, with Bree juxtaposing the likeable asshole with Mansfield's disillusioned, adorable pout. Sweeping Wall of Sound-inspired melodies only make the song's inevitable climax that more vivid: when Mansfield croons "Down, Down They Come/ Wall Poster Star" you're right there, tearing down those magazine cut-outs with her.

Quotable lyric: "Stop acting like some modern Don Juan/ Drawing lines out of rock and roll songs"

Where you've heard it: Coming from your computer speakers right now. (You know you want to!)

Get obsessed:

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