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In rotation: Allo Darlin’s 'Europe'

May 9, 2012 |  7:07 am

In rotation: Allo Darlin’s "Europe." A series in Sunday Calendar about what Times writers and contributors are listening to right now...

Allo Darlin’
The title track of this album begins with a big, vague question: What, wonders Allo Darlin’s Elizabeth Morris, do you think of Europe? She delivers it in a way that doesn’t really call for an answer. Her approach to a melody is that of a daydreamer, one softly and sweetly singing alone or for an intimate audience. Mention a continent, and Morris recalls the tiny, personal details — associating a time and place with being broke, an ironic German postcard or a bar with the Maytals on the jukebox.

The music is similarly adorned with such gentle precision. The toe-tapping pop jangle of “Capricornia” gets brighter with each verse, and a dash of slide guitar adds a twilight glow to the fragile “Some People Say.” Throughout, the London-based quartet conjures a mood for rainy days and writing letters, fitting into the wistful pop tradition of Belle & Sebastian and the Go-Betweens.

It’s delicate, yes, and Morris isn’t afraid to brandish a ukulele, but when she questions whether she’s “already met all the people that will mean something,” the power is in the way such a thought lingers long after the song is gone. 

Allo Darlin’
“Europe”
Slumberland Records

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— Todd Martens

Photo courtesy Slumberland Records.

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