With a title like California Trail, you’d expect more Beach Boys in Adam and Darcie‘s sophomore album, but with autumn in full swing in L.A., I’m glad they went in a less sunny direction. The album has the chilly Pacific Northwest charm of my beloved Softies (Darcie’s voice, wonderfully, bears a passing resemblance to Rose Melberg’s) with the occasional ray of chamber-pop light. “The Fox, The Hare and Doe” starts things with a shy acoustic strum, while later tracks such as “I Need To Let Go of What I Won’t Miss” stop shoe-gazing and start smiling with enveloping harmonies and diamond-cut hooks. All in all, a gem of a record — wherever it’s from.
Adam and Darcie – “Hands/Mind”: mp3
Adam and Darcie – “National Forest”: mp3
(California Trail is out now)