Search - School of Seven Bells :: Disconnect From Desire (Dig)

Disconnect From Desire (Dig)
School of Seven Bells
Disconnect From Desire (Dig)
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1


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CD Details

All Artists: School of Seven Bells
Title: Disconnect From Desire (Dig)
Members Wishing: 6
Total Copies: 0
Label: Vagrant Records
Original Release Date: 1/1/2010
Re-Release Date: 7/13/2010
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 601091059726

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CD Reviews

A desirable connection
The Prestige | CA, USA | 07/13/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)

"On their second album, School of Seven Bells aims for a more listener friendly brand of mystical dream pop that bridges the gap between The Cocteau Twins and Stereolab. "Disconnect From Desire" offers up a solid and sometimes spectacular musical journey that should provide the band a deservedly wider audience.

Sisters Alejandra and Claudia Deheza showcased their marvelous vocal gifts on the group's well received debut album, and this time they have a tighter and more cohesive collection of songs to strut their pipes on. Ably backed by guitarist Benjamin Curtis, the Deheza sisters lend their ethereal voices to a number of instantly appealing and surprisingly catchy tunes such as the opening track "Windstorm", the more grounded and infectious "I L U", the commanding "Joviann" and the uptempo and soaring "Bye Bye Bye". But if the band has tempered its stream of consciousness/free form style for a more controlled and radio ready sound, there's still enough ambitious and unbridled creativity on display here to cement their indie cred.

If "Disconnect From Desire" is hampered by anything, it may be that the Deheza sisters are so good at what they do that sometimes it's almost too much of a good thing. The band constantly soars to such lofty heights lyrically and musically that at times you wish they could come down to earth a little more often. For all the greatness that abounds here, the album may seem at times to be just a little too pristine and tasteful, while lacking in a certain playfulness and fun. Still, that's a minor quibble for an album that certainly ranks as one of the year's most listenable treats."
A mostly lateral move for the band.
Anthony Porreco | Newark, DE | 07/13/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)

"School of Seven Bells (SVIIB) have returned with another album of hazy dream pop that recalls artists such as My Bloody Valentine and Beach House (albeit with brisker tempos). In short, the album pays off due to the band's previously demonstrated strengths of unconventional melody construction and hyper-modern rhythm tracks, but also somewhat limited in terms of its overall sonic palette.

Once again, the most distinctive element of SVIIB's music continues to be Alejandra & Claudia Dehaza's vocals. Now, I've never been to a military air show, but the duo's singing gives me a pretty good idea of the event's appeal: Identical fighter planes executing daring, audacious maneuvers tightly in sync with one another. Likewise, as on Alpinisms, the pair continues to employ harmonized vocal melodies that rise, fall, and plateau in tandem with one another at unpredictable intervals.

Despite these intriguing qualities, however, the very features that allow the Dehaza's vocals to stand out from many other artists simultaneously create problems for sustaining the listener's interest. This is an issue attributable not merely to band's singers, but also to the general similarity of the songs' arrangements, which consist most often of a gentle wash of synths and electronic beeps, dance-y drum beats, and unobtrusive riffing from guitarist Ben Curtis. That's not to say SVIIB's industrial-lite approach to song construction isn't satisfying, as the band continues its flirtations with the en vogue subgenre of dance rock. Tracks such as "Heart is Strange", "Dust Devil", and "Camarilla" all feature synths and programmed beats that are similar to artists such as LCD Soundsystem and YACHT.

Also concerning the album's arrangements, one way in which Disconnect does differ from its predecessor involves Curtis' increased presence as a guitarist. While his playing on Alpinisms was parsed out thinly over the record, his guitar work appears both more often and more prominently this time. As someone who's a big fan of The Secret Machines, this change represents a welcome development in that it that serves as a healthy reminder of just what excellent contributions Curtis is capable of in this area. Likewise, the chunky riffing on "Babelonia" and "Joviann"'s surgically precise leads are clearly reminiscent of his work on the first two Machines albums.

Perhaps the most joyous moments on the record occur on opener "Windstorm", which begins with a chirpy keyboard riff that proceeds to add lead vocals, then drums, before eventually piecing the song's verse, chorus, and introductory motif into an interlocking round before each going their separate ways.

In closing, we ask, "Does Disconnect From Desire represent forward progress since the release of Alpinisms?" Probably not, but that's really a harsh criticism either. While the homogeneity of Disconnect `s sound may tune the listener out somewhat, the band's debut offered a greater number of intriguing deviations from the standard SVIIB's formula, such as the Latin inflected percussion on "Iamundernodisguise" and "Prince of Peace", the more rhythmically relaxed "For Kalaja Mari", or best yet, the slow, unsettling lumber of "White Elephant Coat".

School of Seven Bells still exhibit a lot deal of individuality in their song ideas, but if they go any more Borg on us the next time around, they could be in deeper trouble."
Keep doing what you do!!!!
Jason D. Schofield | Detroit, MI USA | 07/21/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"School of Seven Bells makes the perfect link between early 90s' Brit-pop and tecno.. Two of my favorite generes. I'm also a huge 60s-70s classic rock fan. I love these girls and I love this album. Yes the first album had a bit more, stuck in my head forever tunes, but this one focuses on a little more trance and electronic grooves. Almost perfect and I love it!!! Keep making em'..