If their debut album was a small boat floating down a creek on a humid summer night, and their second album was a slightly corny campfire sing-along, then Love is Simple is Akron Family running a riverboat that only allows you to gamble on frog races.
Now, does that make any damn sense? No, it does not. But it’s true.
“Ed is a Portal” – ok? There are something like seven musical styles in this song, and over those six minutes you get drum machines and synths, the campground vocal harmonies they love so much, twangy geetars, and some other stuff too. I mean, it basically comes down to this – do you like good things? Yes?
Then you shall like this.
What do I like the best? “Don’t Be Afraid, You’re Already Dead,” and not just because I’m maudlin when the weather turns humid. You move along from an acoustic guitar and a repetition of the phrases “Don’t be afraid, it’s only love” in the first part and the track’s title in the second half. The middle is slathered with a lovely refrain of “love is simple.” Get it?
I figure it this way – either you get it or you don’t. And I’m pointlessly biased in the “getting it” side of things. Love is Simple is lovely. Lovely is a term usually reserved for older women as a catch-all for describing anything that’s even marginally acceptable. But in this case it means it is full of love – since “loveful” isn’t a word and “loving” is a bit too verb-y and carries a hint of intercourse with it, we’re stuck with lovely. And lovely it is. Everything sounds great, be it spanish guitar (?) or that off tune chorus thing they like so much. Or when it sounds like a sickly young hangover throwing up on itself.
Akron Family will be down at Castle Clinton in Battery Park on July 24.
Hope to see you there. Should be lovely.