Sukilove You Kill Me

Who would have guessed that one of the year's best Americana-pop albums would come out of Belgium? Sounds crazy, but someone has clearly been studying Wilco’s back catalogue very well. Sukilove is the pseudonym for Belgian songwriter Pascal Deweze, and You Kill Me is the follow-up to his 2002 debut, Talking in the Dark. Clearly influenced by post-Sgt. Pepper Beatles and alt-country, You Kill Me is a fine collection of pop songs featuring simple melodies frequently drenched in a wall of swooning, beautiful noise. The results are bluesy, slightly psychedelic and sonically adventurous. Take for example, the rollicking opener, "Start A Life,” a poignant song that features Deweze's twangy melancholic delivery complete with swirling shoegazer guitars, chimes and synthesisers. "Girl on the Moon” has a pulsating dance beat that carries the song to its closing very well. Another highlight is the stunning acoustic ballad, "I Didn't Meant It That Way,” in which Deweze pleads with a lover for forgiveness. The rest of the music is carefully layered and wrapped in beautiful arrangements, taking into account just the right amount of feedback and static to form a rich, pop sound. (Hidden Agenda)