Ivy - In the Clear

In the Clear


First Appeared in The Music Box, February 2005, Volume 12, #2

Written by John Metzger


On In the Clear, Ivyís fourth full-length album of original material, the band ó which serves as an effective side project for Fountains of Wayneís Adam Schlesinger ó attempts to bridge the divide that it created between the hook-filled pop of its breakthrough outing Apartment Life and its less overt successor Long Distance. Unfortunately, this fusion never comes fully to fruition, and most of In the Clearís tracks sound like leftovers from one side of the crevasse or the other. The collection begins promisingly enough with Nothing but the Sky, an ethereal confectionary upon which lead singer Dominique Durandís vocals defy gravity and spray wispy trails of light as they sail across the groupís underlying, meditative groove. Likewise, on the subsequent Thinking about You, the collective delves into shimmering í80s pop to create an airy, Smashing Pumpkins-on-opium ambience by wrapping a string-slathered accompaniment around the corners of its perky melodic overtures. The remainder of the set, however, goes astray, and although Ivy draws everyone from Blondieís new wave to Nicoís underground rock into its swirling dream-pop fray, thereís little that succeeds as completely as In the Clearís initial pair of selections. Indeed, where Fountains of Wayne provides Schlesinger with an opportunity to exorcize his power pop inclinations, Ivy offers him an avenue for exploring more experimental textures. Still, moody introspection alone isnít enough to carry In the Clear, and although it is pleasant and occasionally interesting, itís not nearly as gripping as it could be. starstarstar


Of Further Interest...

The Churchills - The Odds of Winning

Fountains of Wayne - Traffic and Weather

Adam Richman - Patience & Science


In the Clear is available
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!


Copyright © 2005 The Music Box