In 2011 we missed a song that should have figured among the year’s best. Whether because of the poor promotion provided to the group - or just because they were unknowns - it went unnoticed amidst the flood of songs that reach our ears daily. The song was called “Sails”, and it sounded like Hot Chip, but it was released by a Boston quartet called Hooray For Earth, who thus far had put out two EPs under the shelter of Dovecote (the more recent, “Momo”, released in 2010, stands out). This was also the label where the American edition of “True Loves” came out at the end of the spring, 2011. Now Memphis Industries has decided to give that debut LP a second chance: the “True Loves” that concerns us now is the British edition, with the same record sleeve and all. It should be understood as a sound book that reviews the finest moments of recent electronic pop. They might not have anything else, but the band has managed to put together a sound collage full of catchy songs that expand the more you listen to them, with plenty of instant hits.
Produced entirely by their leader, Noel Heroux, in his new New York residence (unlike “Momo”, which had various co-producers listed in the credits), “True Loves” is an album that all of those new bands intending to reclaim 80s-inspired synth-pop should study from beginning to end. It also definitely shows the multiple personalities that synth-pop has developed over recent years. Whether borrowing the tempo of the most inspired Depeche Mode from twenty years ago ( “Same”), Peter Gabriel’s more new wave moments ( “Bring Us Closer Together”), the percussive tribalism of “Odd Blood” era Yeasayer in the title piece, or the space orchestration that Sufjan Stevens revitalised in “The Age Of Adz” ( “No Love”), Hooray For Earth deserve to be referred to as a heady (and at times, majestic) view on pop. Cut Copy should have done something like this on “Zonoscope”.
The album will probably go unnoticed again in Europe, and will repeat its history of a making a fleeting pass through the American market. But let’s not lose faith: Memphis Industries tends to attract the attention of the most demanding consumers, and with their help, the band might manage to win some people over. They have everything they need to do so.