LadybiRdS - Regional Community Theater
Release Date: August 21st, 2007
Record Label: Creep Records
Ever since I heard about Ladybirds back in February, I was immediately interested in hearing some material. With members originally coming from awesome bands Ley Royal Scam and Gym Class Heroes, how could you not be instantly intrigued? If their previous bands weren't enough to grasp your attention, what if I told you guest vocals on Regional Community Theater included Max Bemis of Say Anything and Matt Pryor of The Get Up Kids? Interested now? Good.
The genre that this album falls under can accurately be summed up in this picture, so it might not be for everyone. Even so, the vocals of Teeter Sperber (which is the coolest name ever, by the way) should make up for it. The opening track "Slice Our Hands (We Are Blood Sisters)" starts off with a brief speaking intro followed by an interesting conjunction of 8-bit Nintendo sounds. With vocal hooks and catchy melodies, a good feeling was left with me after the song was over.
The next song, "The Brown And Red Divide," is the first single and follows the same musical formula of the previous track. In my opinion, it isn't a very good choice for a single. The added vocal effect feels unnecessary since you won't notice it on any of the other songs, and it takes away from how good her voice really is. Up next comes Sperber's best performance, "Andy Lex." The song contains soft vocals throughout and is a nice song to fall asleep to (Hopefully you can fall asleep in under four minutes. But hey, that's what the repeat button is for!). You'll also notice towards the last minute of the song that Sperber has switched singing duties with several pre-teens during the chorus. Usually listeners are iffy over children singing on songs, (Unless it's a Barney compilation I guess) but it fits the mood of the "perfect for bedtime" theme. Regional Community Theater picks up the pace with the next song, the title track, and my personal favorite, "Regional Community Theater." This song just so happens to be one of the two featuring Max Bemis of Say Anything. And although I wouldn't have noticed it was Bemis' voice if it weren't for the liner notes, this song still stands as a true gem with its catchy as hell chorus. This song is what lollipops would sound like if they had mouths.
The other song including Bemis is "Maxim And The Headphone Life." Rather than Bemis contributing back-up vocals, the track is more of a duet between him and Sperber. The song works quite well, as it showcases their equally unique voices. The slowest song on the album, and arguably one of the best, is the four minute, piano-driven power ballad "Cooper, Thanks For The Birds," featuring Matt Pryor of The Get Up Kids. Usually I'm not a fan of slow songs, but the way Pryor and Sperber's vocals coincide together makes the song an interesting experience.
Although some of the music and lyrics may seem weak, unoriginal, and clichè at times, it's overall a very fun listen with superb main and guest vocals. Let's just say it kicks my spot for catchiness straight in the nuts. Regional Community Theater is full of tricks and surprises all the way through. And if you like poppy and breezy music even a little, Community Regional Theater is an album you won't want to miss. You won't regret checking this one out. And if you do, my address is 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, Washington DC. Come beat me up.
When I heard "Maxim And The Headphone Life" I thought, "Now that's what I call 'guest vocals'!", so I was a little disappointed that they were not quite as prominent in the other song he guested on. I didn't enjoy that track as much but I might still be willing to give this a listen.