Imaginary Cities: Temporary Resident


Hidden Pony 

Experimental soul pop, you say. And coming out of Winnipeg? Gotta check this if only for inadvertent humour content. Well, the laffs are on us as this unlikely combination of Marti  Sarbit's old school soul singer’s voice and a suitcase full of electronic effects often approaches something quite different. 

Ably abetted by the duo’s other half, multi-instrumentalist Rusty (Weakerthans) Matyas, Sarbit moves confidently around Metric-sounding hooky altrock (‘Temporary Resident’) technosoul (‘Say You’) and downright dance tunes, rarely taking a false step. 

"Cherry Blossom Tree" is a pristine example of Nineties slowburn altrock, with its slow and stately build up up to a mind-searing crescendo, sure to make for an attention-getting single.

Some of the song structures and arrangemenst are not so assured however, ‘Purple Heart’ and ‘Manitoba Bossa Nova’  in particular coming over half-baked , as if the pair tired of the songs brefore they arrived at a satisfactory conclusion abd just kinda let then run out.

Could that be because the album is something of a rush job, coming hot on the heels of the announcement  Imaginary Cities will be opening for alt legends The Pixies for their entre North American tour?

Whichever, there’s enough pop smarts here to suggest a more cohesive effort next time out. As it’ll likely come out after their Pixies tour, we’re betting on a firmer hand on the arragements and more propulsive rhythms.

James Lizzard