Strange but delicious soda
Ms. John Soda
“Notes and the Like”
Somewhere in between deep electronica, heady rock and near-perfect pop is where Ms. John Soda seems to fit. A German duo that truly defies categorization, Stefanie Bohm and Micha Archer has put together a quirky gem with “Notes and the Like.” Whether it’s the robotic trance of “A Nod on Hold,” the soothing and angelic tone of Bohm’s voice on “A Million Times,” or the frenetic rock of “Line by Line,” Ms. John Soda brings something new and bizarre to the table on each and every track.
“Notes and the Like” resonates in an unusual way, like the blips of a classic video game or unforgettable elevator music. Bohm evokes comparisons to Bjork with her unorthodox delivery, but maintains a style are to her own. That voice coupled with the unusual notes throughout “Notes and the Like” sit in your brain like “Super Mario Brothers” ” impossible to forget in the strangest way.
Unmistakable Brit-rock polished as can be recalling James’ “Laid” and thriving with melodic sensibility, driving guitars and bellowing vocals, “Amber” is already a sleeper for 2006. Clearlake’s songs are poppy; yet sustain a hardened edge, filed with catchy hooks and memorable riffs. “I Hate it That I Got What I Wanted,” “You Can’t Have Me” and “Widescreen” highlight the album; showcasing Clearlake is no one-trick pony.
String arrangements with cello, double bass and violins add depth and originality to “Amber,” making it more than just a rock album. Suffering from harsh overproduction on “Good Clean Fun” and “Finally Free” ” sucking any fun right out ” this album is hardly perfect, but delivers far more hits than misses. With a long list of fellow British outfits attaining mass popularity here before them, Clearlake could easily be on the way to becoming the next breakthrough UK band to conquer the states.
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