The Cat Empire Cinema

The Cat Empire Cinema
Australia's the Cat Empire have done much to build a strong following in North America, thanks to their endless summer touring schedule. Just as festival season closes in the southern hemisphere, the Melbourne sextet transport their tickle funk-trunk to thousands of flip-flopped outdoor partygoers across the U.S. and Canada. Cinema, the band's fifth LP, sees the Cat Empire continuing to focus on one thing and one thing only: keeping feet moving and arms swaying. From the way laidback furrow of "Waiting" to the white boy rocksteady of "Call Me Home," the Cat Empire know precisely how they should sound on Cinema, and they execute it splendidly. Songs like "Feeling's Gone" and "Reasonably Fine" remain as flaky and naïve as ever, except this time, the melodies are sharper and choruses more anthemic. Cinema is another set of songs for board-shorted 20somethings to spend their student loans on. But the recipe isn't broke so the Cat Empire aren't fixing it. (Maple)