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pacificUV – Weekends (Mazarine)

30 January 2012

For those unfamiliar with pacificUV, a listen to one of their albums is new while entirely familiar. They have covered a lot of stylistic ground. Adding electronic pop sensibilities to the expansive soundscape the band has always maintained has given Weekends a fresh and interesting element. The album cover resembles a pill box similar to what my grandfather, veteran of two heart attacks, had to take. The album is mired in heartache, making perhaps the album itself the prescription. They always say talking (or singing) about it helps, right? The emotion likely is why, as a whole, it sounds a bit disjointed. Weekends is ballad-heavy and, after a while, that can get to be a bit of downer. Luckily, songs like the Depeche Mode-ian “Funny Girl,” and the vocoder utlilizing “Ballerina,” go a long way to help liven things up. Some of the aforementioned ballads are gorgeous, however. The spaced-out instrumental penultimate track, “Sunday Night Dream”, is rich and luscious. The vocoder returns to close out the album with “Unplug Me,”. With all of the emotion throughout the rest of the album, the effect serves to demonstrate that the protagonist has nothing more to give and realizes that there’s nothing left to do but walk away. The wind-down that occurs at the end leads us to believe the action was more drastic. Weekends is a good example of a band growing but, with that, there are pains along the way. The album is certainly more mature but ended up not being as much fun as I was led to believe at the start. Since the album is supposed to evoke the feeling of the end of a relationship, that disappointment makes it all the more successful.