Saturday Looks Good To Me
Fill Up the Room (KLP182)
After three years of relative silence, warped indie-pop collective Saturday Looks Good To Me return triumphantly with their fourth studio album, Fill Up The Room.
Following two critically acclaimed releases with Polyvinyl Records,
this marks the beginning of the band's work with K, and a
dramatic progression from their 60's tinged retro-pop sound to a more
textured, experimental and colorful breed
of pop music.
Songwriter, producer, guitarist and lead vocalist Fred Thomas (see also City Center) leads the Saturdays through a shifting palette of sonic joys on "Fill Up The Room", switching from the creaky doo-wop of opening track "Apple" to Smiths-y dance floor jams like "Edison Girls" & "Money In The Afterlife", stopping intermittently for flatout weird, but strangely cohesive takes on the evolution of the pop song with the sprawling drum-circle antics of "When I Lose My Eyes" or the creepy, loopy album closer "Whitey Hands". Renowned for their production and arrangement, SLGTM is true to form with these new developments, meshing soaring string sections, harpsichords and interstellar fuzz guitar with found sound samples and ghostly wordless vocal melodies. By the end, it's clear that Fill Up The Room acts as a powerful song cycle, repeating themes of love, death and redemption in a way free of teenage existential crises, but leaning more towards feelings of unbearable, unreasonable joy and the desire to celebrate all the misery and terror of life as part of the wonder.
The band has spent the better part of the past six years constantly recording and touring, amassing a loyal fan-base through a very personal approach to performing. Apart from their official albums, Saturday Looks Good To Me has released shopping carts full of limited releases with microscopic indie labels, and delighted fans with regular tour-only CD-Rs and LPs. The development towards the very personal and near-religious sounds on Fill Up The Room can be tracked through these obscure releases, and the record's delivery into the world serves as both a bold statement from a band stepping away from what it was before into something more deliberate and a heartfelt thanks to the die-hard fans for sticking by through the strange changes. And as always, through whatever changes and in whatever language available, Saturday Looks Good To Me exists as a testament to the magic and limitless love that is the pop song, and the endlessness therein.