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The Weightless E.P.
Artist:  Viva Voce
Label:  Viva!  Recordings
When Cadence Communications collapsed awhile back, quite a few talented bands found themselves without distribution.  Some bands moved on to other corporate labels, but my favourite of the lot, the husband/wife team of Viva Voce, opted instead to start their own independent record label, appropriately titled Viva! Recordings.  VR's first release is, predictably, a Viva Voce album.

The Weightless E.P. begins on a high note, with the sugary noise pop of "Free (Like I'm Meant To Be)."  Lead singer Anita Robinson's wispy vocals float in and out of a bed of fuzzy guitars, space keyboards and melodic bass:

    I'm reaching up like a flower does
    Out of here
    You know something can happen
    And I could be free, set free

The E.P. is quite a bit more experimental than its precursor, 1998's Hooray For Now, with unfortunately negative results.  For example, the second track, "And the Writing's On the Wall" begins as a peppy pop track, but dissolves into a slow moving indie rock river that goes nowhere.  "Forever Started Yesterday" starts off well enough, with clean electric chords, but is also overlong and rather forgettable in the end.  The band almost manages to redeem themselves at the end with a fantastic cover of the Cure class "Love Song," but it's not enough to make The Weightless E.P. anywhere near as good as Hooray For Now.

Michial Farmer 8/20/2000



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