Do you miss The Golden Age of Twee? High-pitched vocals. Simple 1960s style rhythms. Lots of harmonies. Social awkwardness as a theme. Sweater vests! The Pains of Being Pure at Heart. Someone Still Loves You, Boris Yeltsin. The Field Mice. Beat Happening. Ida.
If those things appeal to you, then you are in luck my friend! Jeanines are a Brooklyn 2-piece who harken back to the golden age of twee. Their self-titled debut is 16 tracks of catchy, twangy pop, with only 3 tracks going longer than 2 minutes. Like much of the twee of old, this music is like classic old punk, but instead of tearing by at a breakneck pace, these are strummed little head-bopping songs.
The vocalist is named Alicia, and she is joined by Jed. No last names: very twee. Also: they record for Slumberland Records, who are keeping very true to form by signing this band.
The songs jangle with monotonous drumming, thumping bass, and rhythms that barrel forward in a straight line. There is a simplicity here, and i think that is part of the appeal for fans of the genre.
There is also a sameness to this type of music: any album or sometimes any band will make all of their music within such a narrowly defined framework that, well, to me it all sort of starts to sound the same. That is the case with Jeanines: except for a few exceptions, noted below, all of their songs seem to blend into one poppy high-pitched haze.
On both Winter In the Dark and In This House Jeanines reach back into the early 60s for that sort of earnest, simple pop. On the second of those two tracks, it almost sounds like Fred Thomas of Saturday Looks Good to Me is producing!
No Home barely breaks the minute mark, but at the same time the instrumentation sounds a little fuller than some of their songs. The instrumentation just a slight bit richer. This really works for me.
You Were Mine is the catchiest of all of the catchy songs on this record. It is also slightly slowed down and ebbs and flows a bit more than the rest of their music.
Otherwise: the songs are strummed fast over simple rhythms that barrel forward for a very short period of time. I mean, the whole record of 16 songs in not even 30 minutes long. But that is how twee bands work.