Artist of the Week: White Shoes and the Couples Company

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Hailing from Jakarta, Indonesia, White Shoes & The Couples Company is a superbly skilled fusion of 70’s retro pop, 60’s Bossa Nova, and the classical music you hear during nature scenes in old school animated Disney films.

Their self-titled, self-produced debut album was released in the United States on Minty Fresh Records in September of 2007, and the country has since seen a significant drop in those who deem their cups to be half empty.

To say that listening to WS&TCC’s debut album is like taking a sun-dappled traipse through warmly beating clouds of benevolent pixies would be an understatement. Mere words cannot convey the endless summer day contained in their ba dup ba dup dup dups, doo doo doo doos and la da da das. Instant sing-along harmonies abound.

Lead vocalist/violinist Aprilia Apsari says it best during “Sunday Memory Lane,” when she wistfully recalls running in green yards, playing hide and seek, and enjoying “such a nice and gentle thing for you an I”.

Yes, these lyrics seem silly, but don’t be fooled. Though the subject matter doesn’t penetrate the deep end of the pool, the music and composition of WS&TCC is off the charts. Just about every song features a jazzy breakdown toward the middle, where bassist/cellist Ricky Surya Virgana often gets crazy crafty.  Check songs like “Windu & Defrina” or “Top Star”, the latter of which also features a fat helping of various ’70’s style ray gun/synthesizer sound punctuations.

The band really flexes their arrangement skills with the Woodwind Version of “Nothing To Fear”, which clocks in at just under 8 minutes – none of which drags. Actually, when listening to the final sequence, it’s hard not to wonder how much some top-notch animation would amplify it, like in Disney’s Fantasia. And as for the lyrics and harmony, well, let’s just say they are soothing to the point of lullaby. Parents should remember this one when putting their kids to bed.

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