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Just in time to thwart the summertime blues comes the auditory salve of Rubblebucket's sophomore full-length, a collection of prog-pop glory that often sounds like an indulgence-free Yes. Kalmia Traver provides captivating, ethereal vocals for the Brooklyn-based, eight-piece, which includes horns and a full-time percussionist.

Not since Jay Z's The Dynasty Roc La Familia 2000 stayed in my car stereo for an entire year have I kept an album in such heavy rotation. Feast your ears on the melodic vocal interplay and harmonic mish-mash weaving throughout "Triangular Daisies." Soak in the splashes of horns, Smiths-like guitar grinding, grooving backbeat, McCoy Tyner-ish percussive piano punctuations, and catchy whistling. Oh, the whistling!

The obvious single is the funk-influenced "Silly Fathers." The track strikes an infinitely listenable balance between uplifting and chilled out. Although I still don't know what the lyrics are about, I'm intrigued. Rubblebucket makes pop like Nile Rodger's Chic, catchy as hell but with a muscled musicality that will have musicians and music geeks nodding their heads and shaking their booties.

Expertly produced by Eric Broucek (LCD Soundsystem, Cut Copy, Hercules and Love Affair), the album bursts with jubilant choruses, eccentric arrangements, and compelling rhythms. This may be the most buoyant album of the year. Upbeat art-rock doesn't get any better than this.

  • Album: Omega La La (2011)
  • Artist: Rubblebucket
  • Label: Sin Duda Records
  • Songs: 1. Down in the Yards 2. L'Homme 3. Silly Fathers 4. Came out of a Lady 5. Raining 6. Breatherz (Young as Clouds) 7. Rescue Ranger 8. Lifted/Weak Arms 9. Triangular Daisies 10. Worker 11. Pile of Rage
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