The Clientele -- God Save the Clientele (Merge)

For their third album, The Clientele channel late '60s/early '70s Pop when the genre was steeped in melodic and emotional simplicity while yearning to explore more expansive modes of expression.

 
The Clientele — God Save the Clientele



For their third album, The Clientele channel late '60s/early '70s Pop when the genre was steeped in melodic and emotional simplicity while yearning to explore more expansive modes of expression. With God Save the Clientele, the London quartet create a new iteration of their breathy bedroom Pop at the intersection of The Beatles' wondrous sophistication and Gerry and the Pacemakers' blissful naiveté, like Al Stewart's Folk Pop lilt woven into Big Star's crystalline Soul with Mitch Easter producing everything to a lush contemporary luster. The success of God Save the Clientele lies in the band's rare ability to faithfully adhere to the tenets of '60s Pop (gorgeous string arrangements, a bouncy yet never cloying melodicism) without falling into parody or slavish emulation, and then seamlessly translating that 40-year-old template into a modern mindset, as evidenced by the Harper's Bizarre-tributes-Scritti Politti Pop sheen of "I Hope I Know You" and its inverse Dance doppelganger "Bookshop Casanova." The beauty of God Save the Clientele — and the appeal of The Clientele in general — is that fans of both eras will find something to love within its contemporary retro chic. (Brian Baker) Grade: B+

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