CD Review: Happy Birthday [2010]

Band: Happy Birthday
Release: 3/2010
Label: Sub Pop

1. “Girls FM” – A
2. “2 Shy” – B+
3. “Cracked” – C+
4. “Perverted Girl” – B+
5. “Subliminal Message” – B-
6. “Eyes Music” – C+
7. “Maxine The Teenage Eskimo” – B+
8. “I Want to Stay (Run Away)” – B
9. “Pink Strawberry Shake” – B
10. “Zit” – C
11. “Fun” – B

Comment: Right off the bat, Happy Birthday sounds like Islands. That comparison pretty much dies, though, after “Girls FM.” Considering the band is still obscure as fuck (they were signed out of the blue by Sub Pop after forming in late 2008), it’s necessary to give them a decent amount of credit just for releasing something polished relatively quickly out of nowhere. I can’t really describe the sound too well on this record. It’s merely an eclectic pop record…what the “independent” big shots like to call “indie-pop.” That really doesn’t tell anyone much, unfortunately. On “Maxine,” you’ll definitely hear some surf-pop Beach Boy influence. Like you’re deaf or something if you can’t hear that. I guess I could namedrop Girls as well, but Happy Birthday is much more spastic. They do a pretty bad attempt at garage/punk on “Zit.” I don’t know, I thought I was going to like this record more than it turns out in the end. It’s good, don’t get me wrong, but nothing special.

Grade: 83 (B-)

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