Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Tullycraft - Disenchanted Hearts Unite

Tullycraft – Disenchanted Hearts Unite
Little Teddy Records, 2005
Acquired: Love Garden, Used, 2010
Price: $6

Easily my favorite twee pop record of the last ten years because, well, Tullycraft are the only band that does it right. Every other twee band that's an actual Twee band (capital T) is trying to be too cutesy, all cloying like. Tullycraft, like Heavenly or the great Sarah Records bands, succeed because they're just nerdy and twee by design. The songs are honest, funny, heartfelt, and at times, display a tremendous amount of depth. Sure, “Our Days in Kansas” (which namechecks my alma mater/school that is in this town so it's kind of required listening around these parts) is a totally hook ridden indie-pop masterpiece, but there's that slight sliver of regret and nostalgia buried in the words that, like all great twee pop jams, sneaks its sadness into impossibly upbeat songs. Then again, some of my favorite tracks are the slow burners like “Polaroids From Mars” and “Fall 4 U.” They understand the essence of twee: punk rock played by nerds. That's what it started as, and that's what it works best as. And while they're not as weirdo or lo-fi as Beat Happening, I think Calvin would be proud.

This record is on glorious PINK vinyl and when I found it in the new arrivals bin I nearly squealed with glee. I've always dreamed of finding this on vinyl and now it's sitting on my shelf. I went through a really huge indie-pop/twee phase a couple years ago, and the best thing that came from it was (after discovering Sarah Record, which blew my mind then and still blows my mind today) this record and this band. They play the kind of music that I always wanted to play if I had a band. And then I started an indie-pop band and when I sang one of the people I channeled was Tullycraft singer Sean Tollefson. Notably his vocals on “Secretly Minnesotan,” which was one of those cornerstone songs with me when the Kite Tails started. We didn't really go in that direction, but I still always dreamed of opening for Tullycraft. And though the Kite Tails are over, maybe someday!