Perhaps a long winter has left your musical palette dry and paintbox bare for the upcoming summer. Just in time comes Estrangers with their attempt to add a few vibrant hues to your speakers. In Season of 1000 Colors, the band has demonstrated their aptitude for 50s-style songwriting, but updated it with a healthy dose of ELO flare and psych-pop riffing. The result is a lush and indeed colorful string of songs, but ones that are not necessarily varied enough to represent an entire spectrum.
The harmonic development and rhythmic persistence make for enjoyable romps such as “Dayzd” and “Scatterheart,” the latter constituting a pleasant facsimile of rock and roll of yore. “Falling in love at the drop of the hat,” could have once resonated across many a sock hop with the way it cascades over the driving piano chords. But often the most dynamic tracks on the album are just little interludes that don’t carry much weight (“Moonraker,” “Blackberry Drift Mantra”). The vacuous haziness of the album extends to the lyrics as well. The images and sentiments presented are charming enough, but often inconsequential and occasionally lacking focus.
Of the entire album, the song “Hold Me Close” comes across as the most intriguing. It plays as the most obvious example of 50s balladry, but is rendered ineffective by a muddled nature. The vocals are not wholly suited to the character of the tune and the message is all over the place. Are you being held close? Is there a bird’s song you’re avoiding? Is love a ghost? Unfortunately, here Estrangers are painting with too many brushes.
After a listen to Season of 1000 Colors, a listener might feel slightly duped. There is a sense of building in many of the songs and the interludes give the illusion of pacing. However, the lack of any real consequence throughout an album that has depicted some vivid sonic colors makes the presence of purpose a mirage. Indeed, the album is kaleidoscopically dazzling without really representing much.