All Girl Summer Fun Band – 2

Portland, Oregon’s All Girl Summer Fun Band completely live up to their name with their sophomore effort 2. AGSFB consists of indie-pop luminaries Jen Sbragia (The Softies) on lead guitar and backing vocals, Kathy Foster (currently of The Thermals, formerly of The Urban Legends) on drums, Kim Baxter (Cherry Ice Cream Smile) on lead vocals and guitar, and Arirak Douangpanya on bass respectively. And they have produced the most joyful and fun-filled album I have heard this year.

The simply titled 2 is the follow up to their self-titled debut album, but that is not to say that it is a carbon copy of their first. 2 still contains great girl-group harmonies, super catchy melodies, and cute and clever lyrics, but the songs are more rocking the second time around with distorted guitar added to the mix. The music and lyrics are quite simple, but that happens to be exactly the point.

AGSFB is not set out to musically revolutionize the indie rock world but simply out to have a good time, which can be seen in their subject matter of grizzly bears, road trips, and celebrity crushes (“Jason Lee”). Despite the simplicity of their lyrics and playfulness of their music, sometimes a surprising amount of emotion is conveyed through Baxter’s sweet, girlish vocals. When Baxter sings, “And when it seems like you don’t really care, / Somehow it makes me think I love you” in “Video Game Heart,” it rings true to anyone who has suffered a broken heart.

Many people may dismiss AGSFB as being another fluffy, disposable pop band because they are not making “serious” music. And to tell the truth, I don’t think that AGSFB would care. Their song “A Million Things” probably sums it up best when they sing, “Got a million things I have to do / But all I want to do is dance with you.” AGSFB’s music sets out to have fun and with 2, they hope they can make you dance with them.