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The Botticellis 

Old Home Movies (Antenna Farm)

Wednesday, Apr 16 2008
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"It's not Alaska without the snow," sings Alexi Glickman on the opening title track of the Botticellis' debut album. He would know — there's something inescapably wintry about the band's drowsy power-pop, which somehow manages to peacefully coexist with the familiar vibe of sun-soaked California. Reasonable bookends to this San Francisco band's record would be the Shins' Oh, Inverted World and Big Star's Third/Sister Lovers, melancholy pop albums that are shivery with keyboards, reverb, and harmonies and take some time to truly sink in. There's a lot of subtlety to appreciate here, from the squiggly folk gait of "Flashlight" to the lush Hawaiian and country tinges of "Who Are You Now." Glickman's vocals are consistently airy, almost threatening to dissipate, but the sharp instrumentation and spot-on production prevents that nicely. "Up Against the Glass," which by all means should be the single, is more upbeat than most Botticellis tunes but clocks in at well under two minutes. That happens a lot on Old Home Movies, meaning things end before you know it. This could work for or against the band on disc, but live it surely makes for a punchy set that doesn't grow moss.

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Doug Wallen

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