MonaLisa Twins - When We're Together Review

rating: 3.5

When listening to the MonaLisa Twins, you don't immediately think of 19 year-old girls making this music. In fact, it's probably the last thing you think of as their sound is firmly rooted in the classic pop of the past, primarily The Beatles. To many of us, their debut album When We're Together will be a nostalgic interest that is a reminder of the great pop of the 60s. These are girls firmly in debt to their forefathers, but that's not to say their album is without interest and merit - in fact, it's a fun, easy listen that deserves radio play. Musically, the album remains very simple throughout and the opening title track sets the tone for throughout. It is very much jangle pop that you can't help nodding along to. The title track is one of the strongest on the album and features the real life twins in simultaneous harmonies singing merrily about love very much in the same vein as early Beatles. Having listened to the title track multiple times on repeat, I can say that it's a very nice song to have on in the background. The production is much cleaner than the music that inspired this, but that helps rather than hinders the sound, and emphasises the guitar. From there, When We're Together indulges in some folk in the style of Bob Dylan on Won't You Listen Now and American beat music on This Boy is Mine, and they are mostly successes. They don't exert themselves trying to play as many chords as physically possible, they keep it to what they know and love, and that's Beatles infused music with Beach Boys harmonies, and for the most part, you get a payoff. If you've never been a Beatles or beat fan, then When We're Together is not going to convince you otherwise - in fact it occasionally displays the worst traits of the genre - emotionless whimsy - but the songs are short and mostly sweet so there's very little harm done. The final track on the album, Nothing is in Vain possesses tinges of Latin influences and also psychedelica, showing that these girls aren't just one-trick ponies and that they more than have the ability to evolve over coming albums and progress their sound, which is what I hope they do. The last few tracks are probably the best on the album as their personalities seem to grow as the music progresses. Without a doubt, these are two very talented young ladies and their attributes are best displays on the tracks Dreams (a slower folk song that features the best songwriting on the album) and I Wanna Kiss You (another Beatles-esque love song, yet it's the track that best captures the identity of the MonaLisa Twins). There is no filler and it's a very cohesive album that has a great rhythm to it - the songs fit together nicely and it feels like an album rather than an assortment of random songs. The MonaLisa Twins may not possess the most strong or emotive voices and their delivery on the album would suggest they are aware of this, but their real strength is in the harmonies that are consistent throughout. Big things could be on the horizon for the MonaLisa Twins, because at 19, they are already accomplished musicians and have a firm direction for their music. Harmonies seem to come natural to them and if they continue to write slick, catchy pop songs that you can tap your feet to, then there's no reason why they can't keep the sound of the 60s alive for a good time to come.
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