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coverpic flag Norway - Full Moon 55 - 04/08/01

Lano Places
Everyone Likes to be Lonely

A new band from Bergen (with members hailing from Stavanger and Ålesund), on a new label based in Stavanger (Checkpoint Charlie Audio Productions - connected with the venue Checkpoint Charlie). Lano Places have been together for some years, working on this, their debut, presenting guitar pop/rock up the alley of the Beatles, Neil Young and R.E.M. according to the press sheet (or, this tag was thrown by a radio station after hearing Lano Places' demo). Welcome to a big club, I say.

My first listening made me feel slightly sceptical. Okay... I don't find the references mentioned quite to fit for Everyone Likes to be Lonely, which is definitely a POP album. A lot of strong pop songs, catchy as hell (but maybe also a bit airy as heaven...). Opening track Everyday I Take My Morning Bath With Her starts a bit Belle & Sebastian-ish, as it sneaks out of the stereo, being the first of 12 songs to make a remarkably whole album. However, I miss some overall roughness, whihch could've given many of the songs some extra sparkling'n'sizzling. But. The more I listen to this record the songs glue to my ears, in my head. Blissful pop, filled with sadness and melancholy, but somehow bringing a mild happiness. Of the material some stand out above the rest, while a few songs happen to be too straightforward or anonymous. I sort of prefer some of the calmer songs, such as the very fine Talking To Carla, and the dark billiance of Crazy Man. Other "winners" are Where Ar You?, Open/Closed, and New Year's Eve In Acapulco.

To make some conclusion: Lano Places write really good material (some of it a bit pretentious, though), and singer Ola Kvaløy has got a great voice. However, they could've brought a lot more out of their material with some other production. Right now they sound far to 80s (especially the guitars and synths) for these pair of ears.

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