ock and indie rock outfit never goes out of its way to be commercial, but this album isn't a difficult/a>
Every once in a while, one comes across a band that is quite eccentric and self-indulgent but is also pleasingly listenable despite all its strangeness; Clues is such a band. The self-titled debut album by this Montreal-based alternative pop
ock and indie rock outfit never goes out of its way to be commercial, but this album isn't a difficult listen either -- the material isn't hard to get into -- and for all of their abstraction, Clues sound like they genuinely want the listener to feel and experience all that eccentricity right along with them. That, of course, is a very different mentality from the left-of-center artists whose attitude is, "If you don't get what we're doing, that's your problem"; Clues are decidedly left of center, but they give the impression that they really do want the listener to understand where they are coming from and go along for the ride. This isn't the type of uncommercial album that takes a lot of getting used to; oddly melodic tracks such as "The Dream," "Cave Mouth," "You Have My Eyes Now," and "Let's Get Strong" are accessible enough to win the listener over the first time he/she hears them, although they are complex enough to make the listener eager to go back a second time and a third time in order to savor all of Clues' quirky nuances. One hears a variety of influences on this 2009 release, including no wave, psychedelic rock, art rock, 1980s post-punk, Brit-pop, and even folk at times; all of those influences serve Clues well, and all of them add to the intrigue on their promising debut album.
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