- Audio CD (July 22, 2014)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Bulk Recordings
- ASIN: B00IZDWX5Y
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,633 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
I Love You But I Must Drive Off This Cliff Now
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In the grand tradition of great pop duos like Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin, Captain and Tenille, Simon and Garfunkel, Hall and Oates, and Shields and Yarnell; Got a Girl is the blossoming collaboration between Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Smashed; The Spectacular Now) and superproducer Dan 'The Automator' Nakamura (Gorillaz; Deltron 3030). A chance encounter during the filming of Scott Pilgrim vs. The World which starred Winstead and featured several songs by Nakamura led the pair to an unexpected meeting of minds and musical tastes. On a whim, Nakamura invited Winstead to join him in his studio. A few sessions later, the duo realized that something fabulous and unpredictable was happening. 'It started out as just an interesting experiment,' says Winstead. 'And then we realized, 'Hey, what we're doing is really good.' We'd recorded a dozen songs, each one coming from a different place, but there was a unifying vibe to all of them.... All of a sudden, it felt like we were doing an album.' The common theme to their collaborations was 'romance,' says Nakamura, but just not in the way you traditionally think of it. 'When we say 'romance,' we re talking about lifestyle and attitude, in addition to relationships and mood.' Distilling and decanting the spirits of John Keats and Charlotte Corday, Chopin and nouvelle chanson, Got a Girl serves up a sweet and sharply carbonated cocktail of the epic, the baroque, the absurd by turns sentimental and postmodern, and in total, utterly irresistible.
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Top Customer Reviews
Winstead sounds ethereal and seductive, a perfect match for the lush and retro musical arrangements, and her phrasing even sounds French in places. "Did We Live Too Fast" is a perfect example of their sound, theatrical strings set to light Hip Hop beats, with a spoken section peppered with Mariachi horns. "Everywhere I Go" is a lovely ballad with gently rattling beats. The piano-sprinkled "Last Stop" sounds really romantic, while the bouncy siixties-sounding "There's A Revolution" recalls Tom Jones or Dusty Springfield.
"Things Will Never Be The Same" sounds like a James Bond theme song, ominous strings and sudden bursts of sound, as does the enchanting "Put Your Head Down" on which both harmonise. "Da Da Da" has an edgy Rock feel with very few lyrics comprising humming, giggling and swearing, and it works very well. Closing is the beautiful ballad "Heavenly" with almost whispered lyrics, twinkling keys and stuttered beats. Heavenly as the title says, as is the whole album.
This is a pop album through and through, but none of that cookie cutter dance-pop junk from MTV. There are extremely retro and vintage elements, things that make you think along the lines of a James Bond movie or some 60s romantic film… but yet it does not come off as a novelty like so many ‘retro’ records do.
If you are familiar with Dan the Automator, you might find yourself wanting to describe Got A Girl as ‘a lot like Lovage’, but that’s not true. Lovage was lusty, with a slow sultry pace. Got A Girl has a little more pep, a little more tongue in cheek, and some incredible hooks.
A friend of mine joked after hearing me rave about it, “So there’s no music here to make love to your old lady by?”
My reply to him was, “This is more like: Music to drive your old lady around in, on a spring day in a convertible with the top down on a winding empty road that eventually ends at the beach while wearing Ray Bans and smiling the whole time”
I just cannot figure out how DtA and Mary Elizabeth managed to pull this record off without coming off as cheesy. How did they do it? I don’t know, but I’m totally digging it.
Pop is not usually my thing. I hate dance pop. There are some alternative pop bands I dig, but usually we’re talking geeks with guitars and glasses. I think Dan’s weakest album is the anti-pop Head Automatica with Daryl Palumbo. I enjoy Mike Patton’s Peeping Tom because it is an anti-pop record. Do you see? I’m NO FAN of pop. But Got A Girl is a pop record that I cannot stop listening to. As I write this review, I’m actually on my THIRD listen to this album today.
I wish I knew how to recommend this album. I think hip-hop heads looking for Del and Kool Keith and Kid Koala cameos might be disappointed, but I think if you can sit and appreciate the hooks here, allow yourself to be hooked, and realize how easily Dan The Automator and Mary Elizabeth pick you up and hang you from those hooks, you’ll totally love Got a Girl.
Lorde-like formula fancy you? Then get the first Got a Girl album for just ten dollars and in just a few business days.