Saturday 1 June 2013


Somehow, strangely, I have never heard of Summer Twins, or rather I had never heard of them until a few weeks ago. I saw their name, and photo, on a poster for a tour they were doing in Japan. I can't remember who was supporting on that tour, but it was probably someone I wrote about around that time. Anyway. That's just it: why are two girls, twins no less - Chelsea and Justine Brown - from California known more in Japan (presumption) than elsewhere? Strikes me as a little strange. But then again, didn't the Beatles try out their stuff in Germany first? I don't know.

In any case, Summer Twins are a duo (joined by an additional guitarist and bassist in concert) who make music with a doo-wop cheesy Americana 50s-60s feel, sometimes more rocky and up-tempo than others. It's melodic and romantic, cute and heart-wrenching, the kind of stuff that Best Coast would do minus the lo-fi and minus the distortion and less negativity. I think, anyway.

There are two songs from the Brown twins this time, both hot off the press and both from their upcoming Forget Me EP, out 4th June on Burger Records. I can start with the title track, 'Forget Me'.

With a pitch-bending, surf rock style guitar, the song begins and soon warps into a ballad with a catchy, toe-bopping guitar melody. The rhythm guitar echoes with nostalgia, as do the backing vocals and the main vocals themselves especially when they sing "I'm trying to forget you, so forget me" - it's magical stuff. Wobbly guitars stand in for tears as the drums beat a pattern around the emotion of the song.

It's definitely by-the-beach, drenched-in-sun kinda music, soaking retro Americana, big-bodied guitars and horn-rimmed glasses and pastel colours. All that. Next single from the EP, and the B-side to 'Forget Me' is the end of night sweetheart crooner, 'I'm No Good'.

From the beginning of this song with its opening lines "I'm no good / I'm no good for you..." it's clear what direction it's going in. It has such a cute doo-wop kinda sound, the vocals being somewhat more heartfelt than in the upbeat 'Forget Me', although it's broken up with a singular jagged break in the sound where the drums thump together with the guitars. The main guitar melody is a warbling arpeggio, backing vocals suitably softened like muted spotlights on a packed slow-moving dancefloor, everything in a 3/4 or 6/8 (whatever) waltzing rhythm, hands around the waist of an partner, prancing around the room. That's what this song is.

It's cute, I like it.

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