The Bird and the Bee The Bird and the Bee

I blame Norah Jones. When someone manages to sell truckloads of records to people who don’t normally buy truckloads of records there will always be attempts to duplicate that success. Hence the charts being congested with mediocre jazz and easy listening artists, most of which make Jones look hardcore. So thank goodness for the relative breath of fresh air that is the Bird and the Bee. Consisting of vocalist Inara George (who is the daughter of Little Feat’s Lowell George) and Greg Kurstin, the band’s self-titled debut owes a huge debt to Antonio Carlos Jobim and his Tropicalia compatriots. With most songs following a similar template, they are saved by their experimental blips and bleeps, and their amusingly strange lyrics, which might go over the heads of casual listeners. Until they get to "Fucking Boyfriend,” at least. Still, there’s something kind of satisfying about light, breezy pop music dropping the F word as if it were the most natural thing in the world and the duo’s sense of humour stops it all from being too unbearably cute. Nevertheless, a little does go a long way and the Bird and the Bee are best enjoyed in small, perfectly formed doses. Fortunately, there are few more perfectly formed songs around at the moment than "Again & Again,” so expect to hear it many, many times before the year is through. (Metro Blue)