You Are My Sunshine

Written by: PP on 02/01/2009 19:50:14

While Copeland's previous studio album "Eat, Sleep, Repeat" wasn't a terrible album by any means, it failed to meet my expectations after two incredible albums that belong to the absolute top of the indie rock hierarchy throughout the history. The early b-sides and rarities album "Dressed Up And In Line" had fans thinking the worst since the band was only on their third album, but the compilation showcased that the songwriting skill and potential never disappeared from the band, which now materializes in its full extent on "You Are My Sunshine", potentially the band's greatest album to date, perhaps even the best indie rock record of 2008.

Sometime between "Eat, Sleep Repeat" and this one Copeland has re-discovered the art of creating meaningful, rich atmospheres with minimalistic instrumentation. Take the quiet album opener "Should You Return", for instance, which fully showcases how fucking amazing this band is and really makes one wonder why the hell aren't they as big as Radiohead already. There's a little more auto-tune/synth in the voice of Aaron Marsh here, and while that normally doesn't equate to anything good, it fits perfectly onto the songs on "You Are My Sunshine". "Chin Up" has potential to be a chart-topping radio hit despite it's quiet piano simply because of it's astonishing chorus that, while not being directly catchy, at the very least grabs your attention: just how Marsh can sing at that high notes without breaking his voice is something even Anthony Green could take a few notes on.

But where the band is at their very best is on "The Day I Lost My Voice (The Suitcase Song)", hands down the best indie rock song of 2008 if not the last three or four years. The song's filled with subtle electronica elements and minimalistic drumming, allowing for Marsh's silky voice and incredible vocals to really shine here: "I've got my life in a suitcase / I'm ready to run, run, run away / I've got no time, 'cause I'm always trying to run, run, run away / Every day in here feels like it's only a game / I've got my life in a suitcase, a suitcase, a suitcase." The repetitions of suitcase in the experimental chorus are nothing short of astonishingly beautiful. Same applies to the 10 minute album finale "Not So Tough Found Out", a mammoth of a song, which perfectly demonstrates Copeland's ability to be one of the most minimalistic bands instrumentally without making you lose interest for even the blink of an eye.

Based on that description, you might already guess that "You Are My Sunshine" is a huge grower. This is also the reason why this review didn't surface over two months ago when it was supposed to, because I couldn't quite grasp understand the immense depth of the album fully before only a few weeks ago. But what I do know is that this is Copeland's finest moment, their career-defining album, the record that people will look back on many years from now saying things like "wow, that album was criminally underrated at the time of release". Not here, folks.


Download: The Day I Lost My Voice (The Suitcase Song), Chin Up, Not So Tough Found Out
For the fans of: Mae, Portugal. The Man, Lydia
Listen: Myspace

Release date 14.10.2008
Tooth & Nail

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