For The Birds

A Suit You Can Wear

Written by: TL on 03/05/2011 22:42:12

So you people want more reviews? Well here's a quick, no-nonsense one then. The subject is "A Suit You Can Wear", the debut LP of Toronto-based quartet For The Birds. The band is composed of three dudes and a woman who, you guessed it, does vocals, and they label themselves as a powerpop / rock act on their myspace. I'm just as inclined to label them as alt-rock myself though, as their sound is characterized by buzzing guitars, traditional song-structures and a slight tint of distortion on the frontwoman's singing.

The whole thing reminds me of female fronted 90's rock bands like Letters To Cleo, Garbage or even a little bit of No Doubt, with the exception that For The Birds sound decisively more 'grassroots level' than anything I ever heard from any of those bands. This isn't something to be ashamed of, seeing as every band obviously needs to start somewhere, but I do wonder if it wouldn't have been better if this band had waited with their first LP, until they had either some bigger ambitions, or maybe just a bigger budget.

You see, for the duration of this album, the sound and song-type is almost exactly the same, and neither provides very rich or engaging experiences. Things don't sound awful, don't get me wrong, they just sound very, very ordinary, with nothing much to be impressed by in departments of either the singing, the playing or the production. This all could be salvaged somewhat, if there were any songs worth writing home about, but in all honest, my impression of those on offer is exactly the same. And even if there are nice ideas in the mix somewhere, the minimalist production certainly hinders them from being presented to the listener very well

For The Birds can be proud of having managed to write, produce and release a debut LP at what I presume is a very early stage of their band, but I'm hard pressed to see it raising eyebrows outside of the band's local scene. For that to happen, I think they definitely have to up the ambition for every single aspect of their band; sound, singing, songwriting, you name it. Doubt my skepticism? Give a listen to other bands going for similar aesthetics on their recent debut albums, like Yuck or The Joy Formidable, and tell me that they didn't nail it noticeably more convincing.

Download: Haircuts All The Time
For The Fans Of: Garbage, Letters To Cleo, Yuck, The Joy Formidable

Release Date 25.02.2011

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