- I Hope You're Feeling Better Now
- Eenie Meenie
- September 23, 2003
Rougly one year since Good Morning Beautiful, Irving return with this five-track EP, I Hope You're Feeling Better Now, and if it's a sign of what's to come on their next full-length, it is possible that this band is going outstanding places. Alternately, it is possible that it will be bland and unmemorable to the extreme, and it all hinges on the band developing their sense of what is and is not necessary. This EP suffers from a lack of that sense, but also benefits from a few songs that demonstrate mastery of that sense.
The leadoff track, "The Curious Thing About Leather", sets a dangerous precedent of excellence that the rest of the album fails to particularly live up to. The first two minutes slowly fade in subdued guitars and dreamy "la-la-la"s, which without warning explode into a cacophony of guitars and drums. As suddenly as it exploded, it implodes nicely into Grateful Dead-like straightforwardly psychedelic pop. Again, an explosion sends it into an alarmingly affecting blast of atonal guitars, overlaid with lyrics from the pre-explosion pop section. Again, an implosion changes to a suspensefully slow revisit to psychedelic pop, which, slowly speeding up, explodes one last time into a gloriously unnecessary final minute or so, an outstanding cacophony of trumpets and general glee - overdoing it though it may be, it's the perfect ending to a song full of unexpected change.
"The Guns From Here" is chock full of toe-tapping synth pop, but comes off as unmemorable. "White Hot" is the second-place highlight: the addictive shifting chorus and memorable guitar lines stand it out, up to it's abruptly fizzled-out conclusion. "I Can't Fall in Love" is the most subdued of the album, and because of this, though it's pleasant, it's also unmemorable. The unfortunate closer features a repeated chorus that's not particularly catchy; staticky background lyrics that aren't particularly invigorating, for all the amelodic energy they try to instill; and guitar work that sounds constantly off-key: the combination thereof is a goofy track that is not at all necessary.
Irving excel at nonoffensive pop tunes that are occasionally outstandingly good and occasionally disappointingly bland, and vary between the two within the start and end of both the album and its individual songs. Often uninteresting, but often outstanding, I Hope You're Feeeling Better Now is never unpleasant.
- Noah Jackson
- The Curious Thing About Leather
- The Guns From Here
- White Hot
- I Can't Fall in Love
- Please Give Me Your Heart, Is All I Need