Earlier this year, Brooklyn foursome CHAPPO released their debut album Moonwater and have steadily seen their star climbing thanks to a steady slew of tour dates with none other than of Montreal, the infectious “Come Home” being used by Apple in a 2010 commercial and most recently getting primetime presence in an ad during a certain major internationally watched multi-sporting event.
After nice words about their excellent first two EPs, Plastique Universe I and II , CHAPPO’s first full length delivers a confectioners kiss of MGMT and The Flaming Lips and a healthy testament to Beck’s sphere of influence. And while the band may resemble Mr. Hansen’s eccentricity at its most coolheaded, they only need a dash to make something special here. Maybe most importantly, CHAPPO succeeds at being fun (like their recent tour mates, the stage shows can become your inner kindergartener’s arts-n-crafts dream - see band photo above).
Guitarist David Feddock, drummer Zac Colwell, keyboardist Chris Olson and vocalist/guitarist Alex Chappo serve up a psychedelic antidote of pop for the heavy-hearted. Body-moving percussion pairs nicely with vocalist Chappo alternating between anthemic crooning and verse-chorus cheekiness - surprising me as he periodically channels Perry Farrell. Just when the tempo slows down so sweetly (“Don’t”), they burst right back to it - mastering the transition of bubbly indie-fare to a twinkling slow dance that reminds me of some of Arcade Fire’s best moments (“What Are You Kids On?”).
These guys may not be household names yet, but they have been around enough to hold an impressive repertory that is paying off: Colwell is a touring member of of Montreal and one of Moonwater’s producers is Hector Castillo, who has worked with none other than Beck. Their latest boasts a zestful helping of songs mixed and produced to sonic finesse, worth plenty more than a 30-second iPod Touch plug, at the same time deserving of the exposure.
Keep the blues at bay: listen to “What Are You Kids On?” and their last EP Plastique Universe II: Pisces Princess below, and watch the (NSFW) video for “Hell No”.