The Concretes – Boy, You Better Run Now

The Concretes
Boy, You Better Run Now

Women. I have realized that I will never be able to understand exactly why men need women, we just do. Come on guys, we do. (Even you gay guys, admit it!) Every man knows a woman who just brightens our day whenever they enter the room – be it a sunny demeanor in the face of societal prejudice or the fact that all of us came from the womb of a woman, I can’t help but have deep respect for women as a whole. Think of a bizarro world where, due to the advances of science, men could conceive children, and there was no biological need for women to propagate the species. I for one would not want to live in that world (even though I consider it every time a new Sandra Bullock movie is released!). I’m positive that a society without women would resemble an ant farm: Joyless, uninteresting, and without meaning.
This brings me to my point: Thank God for women, and hence, thank God for the Concretes. This album simply could not have been created by men. There is a delicate charm woven into all of the tracks, and I swear I smell perfume emitting from my speakers.
Remember the Cardigans and their wonderful pop sensibility? Well, move over Cardigans, there are new contenders for that smooth-pop crown. The Concretes manage to one-up their pop forefathers (foremothers?) by giving their band’s lounge-influenced bubblegum pop songs an earthy, garage-style feel. The production is far more home-grown and live-sounding than the Cardigans, and it conjures images of going to the neighborhood bar and seeing your friend’s band play on the floor in the corner. The arrangements of trumpets, organ, backing vox and percussion are not overdone and slick. They serve as nice garnishes that never overpower the flavorful songs.
I believe this band is from Sweden, but I could be mistaken. (Up apparently has a policy of only sending CDs in a cardboard sleeve with no cover art to reviewers of their CDs. Someone at my place threw the accompanying press sheets away while cleaning!) Even though the lyrics are sung in English, I couldn’t understand them, but no matter: Song titles like “Teen Love,” “Sunsets,” and “Be Mine” sum up the candy-heart sentiments contained within. If this stuff doesn’t make you happy, there are a wide variety of psychotropic medications the doctor can prescribe for you.
Those folks at Up Records have accomplished something cool with this release. I found myself liking something that I never would have heard had it not been sent to me. I think I had better send my mom some flowers, too!