The Fairer Sex - Two Can Win
So is this the best pop record of the year? If not, it ought to immediately jump into the ring with your other choices, despite having been released late last year. The Fairer Sex create lush, literate and slightly caustic tunes that are beautiful in the way good pop should be: it is beautiful to elevate, and to expect the listener to follow along.
That respect for the listener shows in the intricate harmonies, the layered meanings in the lyrics, which are poetic yet grounded. At times, especially on songs like "Shit For Brains," "I Have a Friend Who Can Sail," or "Isabelle Flowers (The Conception Of) they swim in the same waters as those tread by the likes of Ray Davies or Glen Tillbrook: music that is compassionate without being limp, artistic without being pretentious.
In these dozen songs there are worlds of colors and meaning; poetic pop always runs the risk of being trite or cute, but The Fairer Sex are too wise for that. It is that jaundiced, but still loving, view of the world that makes "Two Can Win" indeed a winner.
The duo of Zack Hart and David Wetzel have their hearts and their common sense working at peaks on this record. From the opening swirl of "At Last, At Least," through to the end, you are in good hands.
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