CD Review: Freelance Whales

Weathervanes (Frenchkiss/ Mom +Pop)

Banjo, glockenspiel and harmonium are just a few of the instruments that run through Freelance Whales' hyperactive debut. The New Yorkers love making sounds out of their environment, and their giddy enthusiasm is splayed across Weathervanes. They made their rep playing on city streets and in subways, so there's a messy charm to the 13 tracks. In "Hannah," wispy-voiced frontman Judah Dadone unleashes a long string of things he likes about the girl at the center of the song, including the lemon Now & Laters she carries around. And "Kilojoules" sounds like cluttered Death Cab for Cutie, right down to the snaky lyrics. Like Arcade Fire and dozens of other indie-pop bands that have sprung up in their shadow over the past half-decade, Freelance Whales make music that shows off how smart they can be. But like the candy Hannah offers Dadone, it's best enjoyed as a treat, a couple chewy bites at a time. — Gallucci

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