Lovers Dark Light

The carefully calculated opening track on Dark Light drops subtle hints that you're 30 seconds into a great record. In fact, you're 30 seconds into a great opening song, one that stands out as an anomaly compared to what follows. "Barnacle" is enchanting because the synth and tricks within supplement the beautiful vocals that later get buried underneath far too many effects that, if turned down a few notches, would reveal the sentimental lyrics underneath. The lyrics are, for the most part, intelligent, save for a handful of songs in the middle of the album that are difficult to take seriously. "No Regrets," for example, rhymes "lyin'" with "lion" and contains a sexual innuendo about a magic wand that could be done without. "Peppermint" remains uninteresting despite a light sprinkling of despaired religious questioning. When they emerge from behind the '80s club hits effects, Lovers bare a striking resemblance to Tegan and Sara, especially on "Boxer," but waver too much to garner real comparisons. It's a cruel trick, really: when the lyrics are good, the music drags; when the music captivates, the lyrics are about making "alliances with appliances." (Badman)