Saturday Looks Good to Me

w/Andrew Bird, Pete Krebs Thurs June 12, Crocodile, 8 pm, $10.

It's not just that every single song on Saturday Looks Good to Me's latest record, All Your Summer Songs, is worthy of prime mix tape real estate (think second song on side A, or even lead track on side B), but that each is, in itself, a singular call to arms for the return of the cassette revolution. The second full-length (give or take a couple of self-released albums) by the dimpled darlings of Detroit aches for Scotch-taped corners and stuttered tape hiss--a record whose title could scarcely be more appropriate.

Using only the world's most refined recording techniques circa 1967 (read: four-track), songwriter/producer/mastermind Fred Thomas (of Flashpapr/Lovesick/His Name Is Alive obscurity) and a host of rotating musicians and vocalists (among them such humble royalty as Ted Leo, Tara Jane O'Neil, and Jessica Bailiff) take up selective residence in the Brill Building of their brains to weave what is inarguably the official soundtrack to the summer of 2003--and 1963, for that matter. Wearing a meticulous GPS map of influences on their collective sleeve, SLGTM craft a clear and palatable blend of pop music's holy trinity--the Wilson, the Gordy, and the Holy Spector. So yes, it sort of sounds just like you'd expect it to. But therein lies the beauty that sets SLGTM's particular brand of homage apart from every other self-proclaimed Pet Sounds disciple in the vast indie rock sphere--uncannily evoking the nostalgic ambiance of its influences, All Your Summer Songs doesn't feel at all like all of the other slash-and-burn exploitationists, because SLGTM actually have the patience to sound like they're supposed to, just the way you remember it. From the saccharine sweet (and surprisingly engaging) vocal melodies to the high-school gymnasium reverb that coats the whole debacle, All Your Summer Songs is a rare equilibrium of songcraft and production whose ambient entirety withstands the unforgiving litmus test of magnetic tape in a sun-baked car stereo. Welcome, dear listeners, to the sound of summer.

zac@thestranger.com

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