Friday, September 28, 2007

Gellers - Gellers

I've been on a bit of a Japanese music kick lately and thanks to all the freetime I have at work, I've been able to search around the net for new music to listen to. While searching the other day I was fortunate enough to come across this debut album from the band Gellers, and it's really good. The band seems kind of like a Japanese version of "The Greys," with a group of musicians from the Japanese music scene coming together to collaborate on an album. Fortunately, this grouping resulted in something a bit more satisfying than "Ro Sham Bo," (though "The very Best Years," is my jam). The Gellers make no secret of their many influences, clearly displaying a love for American 90s indie rock bands, and especially a strong affinity for the early Pavement records. The group has a lot of fun on the album by staying creative and keeping things interesting with the implementation of subtle electronics, the occasional Beach Boys harmony, math rock tendencies, Hawaiian themes, and the shifting between more intense and softer vocals. If this is a sort of Japanese "The Greys," then Shugo Tokumaru is clearly the Jon Brion of the group, adding his warm touch to all of the songs and giving them an inviting appeal. It's no suprise that the "prettiest" and most heartfelt tunes here, were penned by him. There's a bit of quality control going on with the album being a brief 8 songs long, but each of the songs here are strong, and the three songs that start the album make for one of the most enjoyable beginnings to an album I've heard this year.