Artist: Lisa Papineau
Album: Night Moves
Label: Lunatic Works/Toxic Music
Review By: Jacob Gehman
Despite their name simply being that of Lisa Papineau, it appears as though “Night Moves” is more of a band effort. So while Papeneau may be the main brains and voice, the album has that full, rich feel you get from an album with many people’s talents collaborating.
The music feels very green. Which is an impression almost 100% influenced by the album artwork. The front cover of the digi-pack which you can see above, is dominantly grass, with the exception of the lower right corner, where you can see a part of a man lying in the grass. The back cover? The same, except it is a man in the lower left hand corner. Inside the digi-pack? No different. Front and back of booklet? No different. CD label? Very green. Very grassy. The only place that is not dominantly green is when you finally open up the booklet and find plain black and white staring at you.
Other than green, the music tends to be a chameleon. While the general thread is electronic pop rock with nods to jazz, tracks often wheel in unexpected sounds. Track one, “Out To You,” lays out the expectations of the album, with some good chilled electronica, as well as mixing in non-electronic tracks to ground the music. The next track, “Shucking, Jiving,” ditches all of that for something that would sound quite at home on an experimental rap album. With the low end rumbling and a distortion on her vocals, it comes off very hip-hop. So while as a whole the album feels fairly cohesive (due mostly to Papineau’s vocals) there is still a variety of sound that doesn’t get boring.
The cohesive factor, her vocals, tend to vary between really good or fairly mundane. The more excited she sounds, the better her vocals sound. The more she sounds like she wants to lull the listener to sleep (“What Are We Waiting For”) the more forgettable they become.
The majority of the tracks on this album are great. Unfortunately, those that do stumble drag the quality of this album down. So while the album’s rating may suffer, there are still a number of very worthy songs on this album that make it highly recommendable. If you like artists like Air or female vocalists like Jem give this album a try.