Netherfriends’ “Calling You Out”

“If you really like Animal Collective, you probably won’t like this record…though I wouldn’t write off Netherfriends entirely.”- Lindsey Whitefield

Lindsey Whitefield

6
out of 10


Calling You Out
June 21, 2009

Netherfriends might remind you of Animal Collective. My knee-jerk reaction to Calling You Out was something like MerriweatherPost-Post Pavillion…only with less noteworthiness. I can’t say that I am exactly impressed, but…

Calling You Out can be fun.  “Friends With Lofts” opens the album with a track that puts forth enough complexity to be interesting, but enough indie-pop and sing-along lyrics to secure its place on playlists at parties thrown by cute hipster girls throughout Brooklyn. I found myself going back to “Really?for a second and then a third listen–a brooding track that seems to conjure the ghost of that-one-night-that-one-summer.

The record lost me after that. The remaining tracks are but a nice alternative to Muzak, songs that will be namelessly lumped into any-playlist because you like two of the tracks and you feel guilty about the rest of the album languishing on your iPod (this may be a personal problem). The tracks aren’t bad per se, they’re just safe, lacking panache, without that je ne sais quoi that separates listening to music from experiencing it.

I didn’t dislike the album, it just wasn’t really anything great, and I had a hard time getting past its pastiche. If you really like Animal Collective, you probably won’t like this record…though I wouldn’t write off Netherfriends entirely.  Currently, Shawn Rosenblatt is in the midst of a new project that may materialize some new, memorable tracks.  Read about it on his blog: netherfriends50songs50states.tumblr.com.

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