La Sera-La Sera (2011)
We haven’t been posting very much on Currently Listening recently, have we? I know I just haven’t had any time to write any reviews, And I assume everyone else is too busy as well. Hopefully this can jump start us again.
La Sera is a side project of Vivian Girls bassist Katy Goodman. There’s nothing unusual with that, band members often form secondary bands to do music that their main band wouldn’t touch. The weird thing is though, that there’s really no difference between the music Goodman plays with the Vivian Girls and the music she plays with La Sera. Yes, it may be a touch less punky, and a bit more poppy, but it doesn’t seem like it would be out of place at all on one of the full group’s albums.
Goodman includes everything that you’d expect:Girl-group sing-a-long hooks, Ramones inspired riffs, artistic distortion…there’s really nothing surprising about any of this. When it works, its highly enjoyable. When it doesnt work, well, it has the exact same problem as when a Vivian Girls song doesn’t work.
And that’s another weird thing. The Vivian Girls have yet to make a solid album that doesn’t have half-assed filler on it. La Sera seems to be following that mold exactly. Yes, “Beating Heart” and “Never Come Around” are really good. Hell. the album starts off strongly with a few songs…but after the first couple, it just gets lazy. “Left This World”, “Hold”, “Under The Trees”…all filler. Goodman’s solo project doesn’t even work well.
Recently, myself and fellow Currently Listening reviewer Delia saw La Sera opening for twee-poppers Tennis at the Bowery Ballroom. Live, I liked them well enough, though I admit there wasn’t anything special about her, and most of my enjoyment was probably due to the fact I have a thing for female singers. Goodman stands out from her band, and not in a good way. She’s all decked out in tattoos and ragged punk shirts, and they look like they just came for an indie-pop show. The crowd wasn’t really into it (as this was a Tennis concert, not a Vivian Girls concert), and Goodman came off as totally out of place. I don’t know, I always found the Vivian Girls to be not as good as their hype, and La Sera seems to be following in their footsteps.
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