Pays : Canada Label : We Are Busy Bodies Genres et styles : Psych-Folk / pop psychédélique / Psych-Rock Année : 2023

Vanity Mirror – Puff

· par Varun Swarup

Puff by Vanity Mirror is a solid and fun throwback to the psychedelic era of 60’s pop. While the duo of Toronto-based Brent Randall and Johnny Toomey showcase their musical prowess and demonstrate a deep appreciation for this genre, for those seeking a more innovative or contemporary take on the retro sound, this album might leave you a little wanting. For what it is though, it’s great. 

The album opener, “(I First Saw You There on) Tinpot Lane” is a fantastic showcase of Vanity Mirrors’ ability to recreate the classic 60s rock sound with precision and authenticity. The jangly guitars, glistening harmonies, the bouncy basslines are all reminiscent of the iconic pop acts of the era – think Revolver era Beatles, Electric Light Orchestra, and the Byrds. Songs like “Tuesday’s News” and “How I Learned Something Worth Knowing” are undeniably catchy with memorable hooks and baroque refrains, Puff exudes joy. The number “Somehow You Know” is an especially plaintive and beautiful song that adds to the variety of what is on offer. 

However, as the album progresses, it becomes evident that Puff plays it quite safe, sticking closely to the established tropes of 60s pop without offering any fresh perspectives or innovative twists. While the nostalgic familiarity can be comforting, it leaves listeners craving something more substantial or unique. The production on the album is commendable, with a warm and vintage sound that wonderfully captures the essence of the era. The instrumentation is well-balanced, and the vocals are clear and melodic, allowing all that retro charm to shine through. Vanity Mirrors’ attention to detail in recreating the 60s sound is evident, but it could have been nice to be a little surprised.

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