One of the high-points of last years Perch Patchwork LP, Living Decorations showcases all that is great about Chicago four-piece Maps & Atlases. The summery vocals of frontman Dave Davison, that somehow come across as both urgent and laid-back in equal measure, may do there best to throw you off the scent but there is actually a hell of a lot more going on here than you initially realise.
The rythmic afrobeat percussion and prickly guitar of the first thirty seconds brings to mind a more textured Vampire Weekend, before further layers of guitar and vocals are added to the mix and the song grows and expands into something that recalls Yeasayer’s first record or even Menomena at their most mainstream. To compare Living Decorations to other bands is almost an injustice though; as is the case with the majority of their work, it’s completely unique and could only be Maps & Atlases.
The band have always been pigeon-holed as ‘math-rock’ and while this was true of some of their earlier work it doesnt do justice to the pure pop-heart that can be found in the high points of Perch Patchwork – and nowhere is that nack for a great pop song better realised than on Living Decorations. An obvious choice for a single it may well be, but that doesn’t make it any less brilliant.
The flipside of this single release is a stunning remix of Living Decorations courtesy of up-and-coming elctro wonders bretonLABS – check it out here;
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