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Album Review: Van She - Idea Of Happiness

24 July 2012 | 10:58 am | Naomi Dollery

This lurch into tropical-inspired music may sound predictable, tiresome and even lame, but the band have managed to work the trend well.

The electro zealots from Sydney have landed once more with their second album in tow, offering up a heavy tropical sound, which has certainly departed away from some of their earlier efforts. This lurch into tropical-inspired music may sound predictable, tiresome and even lame, but the band have managed to work the trend well – right down to their Hawaiian print shirts.

The pop flavoured title track kicks off the album in style, with its easily hummable tune, buoyant melody and (perhaps a tad predictable) lyrics; but it's perfectly catchy and puts the album in good stead. No doubt, many may have already heard the track Calypso, with its heavy synth and soaring chorus generating, perhaps, mild irritation with its mind adhesive qualities. That said, like the opening track, it somehow works and the result is an uplifting party track bound for ongoing and en masse repeats. Other instrumental tracks throughout the album, such as Radio Waves (I&II), offer up some smoother, retro inspired sounds that make them entertaining to listen to. Elsewhere, the album draws on various equatorial themes made manifest in the tracks Jamaica and Coconuts, each equally enriched with plenty of hyper tropical-inspired beats and summery melodies, abandoning subtlety all together.

Obviously, however, this is what the band were going for; an enthusiastic approach to making party-appropriate music. In its own right then, it's a solid album, but I suspect you may need a few cocktails to get the most out of it.