Chamber Strings Month of Sundays

Looking more like they should be part of Nick Cave's Bad Seeds than a band performing pop-filled lullabies, the Chamber Strings have mastered the orchestrated sound of pop. Month of Sundays, the band's second album, is an ode to pop craftsmanship. Emphasising the importance of polishing their sound, the band has upped the production from their debut record, Gospel Morning, which was slightly rougher on the edges. The 11 songs are each led by a piano and guitar combination topped off by other randomly used instruments like the viola, banjo, glockenspiel and a brass section. When the introductory instrumental title track ends, it becomes Kevin Junior's voice that guides the listener through an album of bittersweet ballads. Sounding like he should be one of Carl Wilson's sons, Junior's voice has an angelic quality that is capable of singing woeful tales of regret, love and coping with loss. However, instead of depressing the listener like a melancholic album should, Month of Sundays is more likely to whisk you away with its many moments of bliss. An album full of sing-alongs, this will definitely help you make it through the summer. (Bobsled)