Raleigh, NC's Rosebuds are back with their second full-length, marking an astounding growth in stylistic range and songwriting maturity from their 2003 debut, The Rosebuds Make Out. Incorporating influences as diverse as The Kinks, The Go-Betweens, The Smiths, and The Zombies, this husband and wife team have perfected the three-minute pop songs they rolled out on Make Out and have taken adventurous forays into a denser, more lush soundscape. A beautifully realized pop album that will have you dancing, laughing, crying, and ultimately left breathless. Merge. 2005.
Do you love tightly wound pop tunes but lack enough hours in the day to deal with art school pretensions of, say, the Arcade Fire? Ease over to Merge label mates the Rosebuds. The Raleigh, North Carolina indie rock band is fronted by Ivan Howard and Kelly Crisp, who reportedly played their first show together just a week after they got married. How's that for fuss free? Even better are the tunes on its second album, Birds Make Good Neighbors
. A little more subdued than the songs on its firecracker debut, Make Out
?, yes, but hardly lacking brains or bite. Besides, those Kinks
influences still shine through on the swooning "Hold Hands and Fight" and the shout-along "Shake Our Tree." It's reassuring to know someone is still making noise for college radio without crash helmets. --Aidin Vaziri