It’s Dec. 22 and grades are posted. As I reflect on the things that made my them what they are, my memory is taken back to the beginning of the year, and more importantly, the songs that got me from class to class. A few weeks into the school year, Canopy Club got a visit from Someone Still Loves You, Boris Yeltsin. It was perfect.
Thriving off of sweet melodies and laid back grooves, SSLYBY achieves the same joy on their 2008 album Pershing as they do live. Things are easy flowing, momentum never overwhelms and voices back each other in all the right places. “Glue Girls” starts Pershing with a nice moving bass and summertime guitar, matched with multiple voices and even some cowbell. Everything chimes in at just the right time as voices overlap and coexist just like you’d hope; it’s indie-pop success.
Pershing moves right along, with a nice horn transition into “Boring Fountain” which thrives off of its perfectly distributed vocals and hints of a reoccurring trumpet. What really becomes a favorite though, with its soothing harmonies and winding guitar is “Glue Girls.” Complete with an unexpected string section, “Glue Girls” creates a melody on par with The Shins and delivers it in their own sweet way.
The next few tracks carry on in the same happy, easy way Pershing started with and is highlighted by songs like “Some Constellation” and “Heers.” “Some Constellation” builds lightly on what sounds like something which might get real big, yet instead climaxes in a subtle, pleasing way. It’s pretty and satisfying, in a perfect low-energy mixture of guitar, drums and vocals. “Heers” starts out in what seems to sound like a poppier Elliott Smith style with a slightly somber melody, but then perks up with an eventual happy rolling bass, cheerful harmonies, and doo- doo- doos.
Pershing succeeds in pleasing now, just as it did in the warm weeks of August and September, defying the seasonal borders that like to place handicaps on most records. It’s an album ideal for these December days, just as it is for a 3-year belated discovery.

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