You Kiss Like An Angel 7 inch
By: Brent R.
It’s interesting to note that the last words before the “Thank you” list on Weston’s last studio album, Matinee, are “Long Live The Pixies!” because the opening of its brand new 7” sounds just like “Where Is My Mind?” off the indie-rock staples’ classic, Surfer Rosa. Weston, a quartet from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, has been churning out catchy pop punk ballads about failed high school relationships since 1990. The only noticeable change along the way was when bassist “Chuck” was replaced by bassist “Jesse” before the release of Matinee in 1998. Although, with the addition of a new bassist comes a more serious, indie-rock-driven sound as opposed to the sophomoric pop punk for which the band is known. Weston has called many labels ‘home’ over the years, jumping from the Gern Blandsten label to Go Kart Records and now on to Mojo Records. The band’s graduation to indie rock is solidified on the new 7”, which is a preview to a new full-length due out in the fall of 2000.
Last year Weston submitted a track to the Pixies tribute, Where Is My Mind?, which also featured fellow pop punk bands like Weezer and The Get Up Kids. The new 7” sounds like it was heavily influenced by that experience because the A-side, “You Kiss Like An Angel,” is a blatant nod to the Pixies with its slow, deep bass-line and half-spoken lyrics. It even has whispered vocals in the background a la “Debaser.” The only element it’s lacking is Kim Deal’s high-pitched “Ahh-Ooh”, but even that happens at the end of the song courtesy of co-lead singer Dave Weston. It’s almost embarrassing just how much this song sounds like it was stolen from a possible Doolittle outtake and repackaged with another band’s name.
Thankfully, the B-side, “Volume Hater”, returns to Weston’s trademark sing-along “Bah-Bahs”, recalling “Indie Rock Star” off Matinee. The song is still slower than pre-Matinee songs, but it’s catchier and more upbeat than “You Kiss Like An Angel.” The lyrics show that Weston has not lost its sense of humor. With lines like “I’m a teen idol married to denial” and “Golly, why am I so sensitive?” Weston retains a lighthearted disposition despite the uncharacteristically darker music.
If these two songs are representative of what the new full-length, The Massed Albert Sounds, will sound like, then Weston is going to have to wave ‘goodbye’ to the few pop punk fans who lasted through Matinee, and say ‘hello’ to an older, more indie-rock savvy crowd. I believe it’s a good change and can’t wait to hear more.