Album: Pretty In Pink – Pillows

Pillows is the new full-length album from the Melbourne-based minimalist bedroom pop band, Pretty in Pink. True to its name, “Pillows” is a soft, personal affair that may see some sad and sleepless nights, but overall provides comfort. The album’s subject matter is often intimate and observational while being perfectly soundtracked with a sparse instrumental background of stringy guitar riffs, ropey bass lines, and minimal percussion that encourages you to focus on the album’s lyrics. The album’s opener, “Pressure Socks”, discusses the anxieties of flying and uses visuals of airline neck pillows and pressure socks to reflect on a personal tragedy they may represent.

These somber surf pop tunes always keep the listener close to the ocean. With watery and echoey guitars that create a spacious atmosphere, you often get the feeling of being on a small vessel in a large, powerful body of water. Sometimes calm, other times stormy, this is best encapsulated on the standout track “No One Else” which shares the enduring sentiment “the calm is where I live now” and that “there is no one else, I’d rather weather this storm” which sung in beautiful octave harmonies that bring to mind “69 Love Songs”-era Magnetic Fields. The song also features a guitar solo that feels like lightning bolts appearing suddenly over a stirring sea.”Trouble” keeps us near the sea with a fishing analogy, as does “Turtles” in which we can imagine swimming with sea turtles and getting sunburned on the beach. “Pale Blue” expresses a fear of drowning and encourages one’s offspring to learn to swim in hopes they won’t know the same concerns and have a more promising outlook. Pillows is available on CD and cassette collectively from Subjangle, Little Lunch Records, and Hidden Bay Records.

Written by John Brouk

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