Little Brazil comes from that brand of emo-rock that holds as a deity Rivers Cuomo, but unlike the sixties-influenced pop of Weezer, some genuine feelings are held on Little Brazil’s “You and Me”. Leading off the disc with “Now” and skillfully tying it in with the heart-beat/ethereal nature of “The Way You Listen”, “You and Me” is so much more than an album – it is a journal entry, a cry for help, the highs and lows of Austin, Corey, Landon and Danny. The guitar lines that soar over the masses of other instruments create the wide-open landscape shown inside the liner notes for this disc – the grey sky that makes up a good third of the picture, to be specific. The title track goes back to the original Weezer – the Beatles and draws a minor among of that sweet Beatles-style of vocals in what can be call a picture-perfect pop song, regardless of what period of history one places it. Even the minorly-distorted-yet-tidy guitar lines on the track seem at place in this track. Shaking the cobwebs away for “Southern Florida”, a deep and violent interior bubbles underneath the staggered-vocals on the track. Even mulling around in a genre that has been done to death these last few years, Little Brazil are still able to make fresh music by infusing their emo-rock with a Super Furry Animals/Pitchfork-esque alternative rock.
“Now It’s Time” moves much more into the alternative aspect of things, and in this different style Little Brazil seems as comfortable as any one-trick pony whose specialty is this style of music. In fact, “Now It’s Time” is the creative climax for the entire disc, incorporating a horn that only sparks the pile of dry kindling that is the rest of the track. The track itself is a work of genius, building up pressure and expectation with each subsequent line and drop-out by the band. Landon’s far-reaching vocals on this track are the piece de resistance, and the comparisons need to be made between LB and Sebadoh to proper gauge how important this band will be to music in the current period. The amount of different approaches on “You and Me” are numerous, and will assure that the widest possible swath of individuals will find themselves digging Little Brazil’s sweet, sweet music. One of the best independently-released albums of this young year.
Top Tracks: Now It’s Time, Pointing Fingers
Little Brazil – You and Me / 2004 Mt. Fuji Records / 9 Tracks / http://www.myspace.com/littlebrazil / http://www.mtfujirecords.com / Reviewed 12 February 2005