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Tapes 'n' Tapes - Outside

  by Adrian Huggins

published: 4 / 3 / 2011

Tapes 'n' Tapes - Outside
Label: Ibid
Format: CD


Understated, but sublime indie pop on third album from Minneapolis-based band Tapes 'n Tapes, who at points are surprisingly English in their sound

Now three albums into their career with ‘Outside’, Minneapolis-based band Tapes 'n Tapes are still evolving and have made an album that they feel is truly “their own”. Sounding at points surprisingly English, their indie music has a similar sound to bands like the Kooks, only Tapes 'n Tapes are a little more edgy. They manage to keep things fresh throughout and have that grit that comes from rising up through the live circuit and relentless touring. The Coral are another band that Tapes 'n Tapes are sometimes compared to which is again a fair comment, but I do feel there is that special extra something in there. ‘SWM’ and ‘One in the World’ are so indicative of those great Brit-pop/mid 90’s indie bands, all of whom made you want to sit outside supping cider all day just enjoying life. What I really like about Tapes 'n Tapes is that they have that element of fun about them, without being like so many American indie acts too ‘zany’ or overly alternative to the point where you think, “Oh God, get over yourself”. This lot have that down-to-earth spark with tunes like ‘Badaboom’, ‘Outro’ and ‘Hidee Ho’ and are seperated from that. ‘The Saddest of All Keys’ to me sounds almost White Stripes-esque, only with a bit more background to it. The subtly theatrical vocals from frontman Josh Grier are held together patiently by Jeremy Hanson on percussion and Erik Appelwick on bass and backing vocals. The other man in the mix is Matt Kretzmann who is responsible for the other elements which consist mostly of horns and keys, and it is arguably his contribution throughout the album that in many places helps really lift these songs and gives them their sound, most notably on ‘On and On’. While many a band making this sort of music can be let down by their simplicity, Tapes 'n Tapes manage to take it up a notch and the results are wonderful.

Track Listing:-
1 Badaboom
2 Swm
3 One In The World
4 Nightfall
5 Desert Plane
6 Outro
7 Freak Out
8 The Saddest Of All Keys
9 Hidee Ho
10 People You Know
11 On And On
12 Mighty Long

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