Paul Malloy, FFS’s resident cantankerous sod, has his heart melted by Alessi’s Ark and does his best to deny it.
It’s clear that this album, probably not on purpose, is music made for its time. Of late my time has primarily been consumed by trying to stave off redundancy, but every time I could I listened to this album and floated away. There is escapism in Notes from the Treehouse that’s exactly what the doctor ordered.
Comparisons with Laura Marling seem out of place, given Miss Laurent-Marke’s much ‘lusher’ sound. Its distinctly poppy arrangements are reminiscent of a non-mental Bjork, as is her heavily accentuated pronunciation. Close work with Bright Eyes producer Mike Mogis is also evident.
The album opener is definitely a highlight. ‘Magic Weather’ is a beautiful song that almost invites you to daydream yourself into a chocolate advert. I think it’s fair to say that elsewhere on the album, the beauty of the songs is harder to find but the rewards become greater. I had to listen to the album several times to discover what all the fuss was about, but finally it grew and grew until I couldn’t put my mp3 player down.
I can’t believe that Alessi’s Ark hasn’t got a long way to go, given her age. There seems to be a lot of time where youthful ‘quirkiness’ is used as a substitute for genuine artistic endeavour but based on what is recorded here, its clear that to use the word ‘promise’ is insulting. Notes from the Treehouse is not quite a heartbreaking work of staggering genius but its definitely getting there.
Words: Paul Malloy