Title - 'The Explorers Club' [Vinyl]
Artist - The Explorers Club
For those not in the know, The Explorers Club, who have been lauded for “brightening our winters with their patented
brand of sun-kissed beach-pop” (Shindig! Magazine), will release two albums simultaneously through Goldstar Recordings (digitally June 12th, 2020 and on Vinyl and CD July 12th, 2020).
The Explorers Club (which we have on lovely yellow vinyl here now and will be reviewing directly from) showcases a dozen originals from the self-styled sunshine pop band featuring multi-part vocal harmonies and lush melodies reminiscent of ‘60s and ‘70s groups such as The Beach Boys, The Turtles and The Association.
To Sing And Be Born Again is a ten-part love letter to their influences, consisting entirely of covers that were originally recorded by The Lovin’ Spoonful, Paul Revere & The Raiders, Herb Alpert, The Zombies and more.
The Explorers Club is the brainchild of Jason Brewer, who founded the band in his native Charleston, SC before relocating to Nashville.
With several songs featured on such shows as The O.C. and How I Met Your Mother and with three albums already under their belts –
Freedom Wind (2008), Grand Hotel (2012) and 2016’s Together – this June’s twin releases are Brewer’s most ambitious undertaking to date.
2. 'One Drop Of Rain'
3. 'Love So Fine'
5. 'Don't Cry'
6. 'It's Me'
8. 'Dream World'
9. 'Say You Will'
10. 'Somewhere Else'
12. 'Look To The Horizon'
The exuberantly harmonious 'Ruby' kicks Side A off in some fine style and that's followed by the lush, mid-tempo hipsway duo of 'One Drop Of Rain' and 'Love So Fine.'
Then comes the peaceful summer breeze of 'Mystery' and the lo-fi work of '60s musical art, 'Don't Cry,' which is backed by the foot-tappin' inflections of 'It's Me,' with the first side of this vinyl coming to a close on the gently orchestrated, bossa nova wonderment of 'Dawn.'
Side B opens with one of my own personal favorites, a delve into the formative days of the Beach Boys-esque 'Dream World,' and then this quite magnificent, and truly dedicated to the spirit of an era gone by album continues onward with the summer assonance of 'Say You Will.'
The upbeat, tambourine psych pop of 'Somewhere Else' is next with the album rounding out on the absorbing 'Dreamin', with the Phil Spector-inspired 'Look To The Horizon' bringing our flashback journey to an end -- well, until you flip the vinyl over and start the process all over again, of course! (which I sincerely urge you to do).
On one level, The Explorers Club stands in stark contrast to its companion album; where To Sing and Be Born Again is all covers, this self-titled release is a collection of a dozen originals.
But once one moves beyond that surface difference, it’s clear that both are the product of a unified creative and aesthetic vision.
Brewer’s production choices almost always employ “real” instruments: string sections are strings, trumpets are brass. And when synthesizers crop up, they sound like what they are.
So even though The Explorers Club isn’t really a group at all, its music is unfailingly real and organic in nature.
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