September 02, 2005

The Carolines "Meet Me at the Marriott"

Back in 2003, a little band from Portland, Oregon released one of the best records of the year. Youth Electronics is still a great record, five years running. After an extended period of silence (grumble, grumble), it was easy to fear that this great young band had simply disappeared. But thank goodness, no! Though their silence has been frustrating, they have scraped together Meet Me at the Marriot, a three-song EP that’s a teaser for the band’s upcoming third album, and it’s good to learn that the band has lost none of the magic that made Youth Electronics so wonderful.

The first song, “Ooh Ooh Satisfied,” packs a hell of a punch; with a really tough guitar lick and a wonderful amount of “ooh ooh” accompaniment, the song’s feel is smooth, sophisticated and more than a little sexy. This song is one that simply burns with rock-hard intensity. The next song, “Too Late,” pours a lot of emotion into the rock machine, a power-pop love story for the heartbroken, and though it lacks the intensity of the first song, it’s still quite excellent. The final song, “Good for Me,” turns down the rock and turns up the melody; it’s a quiet but pretty love song, highlighted by Aaron Trueb’s angelic singing, and it sounds like a long-lost Badfinger outtake.

It’s good to know that The Carolines are still around, and Meet Me at the Marriot is an excellent jolt of pop-rock that makes me very excited about the prospect of their next full-length.

--Joseph Kyle

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