The style of music that Lullaby Baxter does on “Garden Cities of To-morrow” is something that has not been heard since Petula Clark was selling millions of records. Where individuals like Bjork have touched upon the style in previous years and acts like The Propellerheads have tied it into different forms of music, Lullaby Baxter’s style on this disc would fit in perfectly with the sixties.
“Cardboard Armoured Car” is the first unqualified hit for Lullaby Baxter, and it is not due to the instrumentation that this track is a hit. Even if the track does suffer from word choice some of the time (don’t know where to go / the world is my potato lyric is particularly suspect), the music and vocal stylings will drive themselves deep into listeners’ heads. When Lullaby says “I’m authorized to say goodbye”, the first thing that I could compare that section of the track to would have to be Momus. The somewhat withdrawn, French-influenced sound of “Garden Cities of To-Morrow” has a good analogue in the previously mentioned Momus.
While “Little Song” has a slower tempo, the strong vocals of Baxter during the track is perhaps why individuals will stick with the disc. There is a hint of the Carpenters during this track; Lullaby Baxter does not derivate from this very specific type of style through the entirety of this album. “Sugar” is the next hit for Baxter, and while it stays in the style that ey has created specifically for this album, there seems to be hints of both Dolly Parton-esque country and Meatlof-like crooning on the track. The inclusion of slightly different styles during the track keeps the energy going and shows fans that Baxter is not a one-trick pony. There is a good chance that given the proper push, Lullaby Baxter will be taking the place vacated by artists like Bitch and Animal and Fiona Apple. There is nothing at fault during this album; while the style of the music is definitely rooted in an earlier tradition, Baxter is savvy enough to make what ey is doing salient to anyone that might just be listening in. The style that Baxter does would not typically be something I like, but Baxter has so much talent that I was already sold on “Garden Cities of To-morrow” by the time that “Cardboard Armoured Car” ended. Find this album and pick it up as soon as possible.
Top Tracks: Cardboard Armoured Car, Antarctica
Lullaby Baxter – Garden Cities of To-morrow / 2006 Boompa / 12 Tracks / http://www.lullabybaxter.com / http://www.boompa.ca / Reviewed 06 September 2006