Rhythm & Views

Little Pieces

Little Pieces, a Seattle-based three-piece, have with their first self-titled record a cure for your midsummer, economic-recession blues: clever rock songs, with catchy melodies and empathetic lyrics. No money? Little Pieces understands. "I'm bankrupt as an airline," sings lead singer Herman Jolly on "The Skier," but the jangly guitars and happy beat make the whole thing feel joyously liberating.

Praying for rain? The opening riff of "Hurricane," with its Sesame Street-reminiscent glee and the lines, "count your blessings and you'll say, it takes longer every day," seem to put things into a pleasant and manageable perspective. Bored out of your unemployed mind? Rock along to the story of Windy Boy in "The Zeppo Stone," who, like you, has "nothing left to do." Thinking of hooking up with that girl/guy you met at the bar, who you know has issues, just for fun? The "Featherweight Song" advises that "a summertime chase would be but a waste on one who is clearly quite dirty."

You may be wondering, "How many days until the escape?" like Jolly asks on "Ordinary Friend," but Little Pieces' power-pop gems won't relent until you're good and cheered up and seeing things in a more logical and lasting light. By the last song, "Candy Stairs," you'll be hand-clappin' and singing "falling down the candy stairs / hurts a little now, but who cares?" with Jolly, your apathy replaced with optimism and free-spirited glee.

You may be falling down metaphorical stairs, but thanks to Little Pieces, they're now made out of candy.

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