Angus McOg — Beginners
(Audioglobe no#, 2019, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2019-10-28
This Italian band has a lot in common with jangly melodic music of the 80s from bands like The Feelies, The Sundays, The Church, The Go-Betweens, and so on. The use of Mellotron sounds adds in a flavor of some Scandinavian bands like Pogo Pops, Subshine, and others that I’ve written about. What that means is that many of the songs are built around finger-picked guitar parts, acoustic or electric (but not distorted) or both together, the vocals are pleasant and have lots of luscious backing parts, keyboards have Mellotron flutes and strings in abundance along with other sounds, and there are some parts that sound more like real strings, though they may not be. “Ulysses” takes a slight detour from the style of the rest of the album, with some 80s-sounding synth parts and a simple drum pattern that brings to mind Modern English. Certainly, from listening no one would guess the musicians are from Modena or anywhere else in Italy, but the leader, songwriter, and singer is Antonio Tavoni. Tavoni is joined by multi-instrumentalist Luca di Mira, who is also in Giardini di Mirò, a post-rock band I’ve never heard. I didn’t get any credits with the album, so I don’t know who else, if anyone, is also involved. In any case, Beginners is a very pleasant listen with lots to offer in terms of melody and atmosphere, with arrangements sophisticated enough to support repeated listening.
Related artist(s): Angus McOg
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