On February 17th we get the long-awaited return of that trio, with the release of the crowd-funded album Whatever, My Love (full disclosure: I did contribute to the PledgeMusic campaign for the record).
The reunion seems to have done Hatfield wonders. It's a refreshed and rejuvenated sound we get on the album. That's obvious from the opener "Invisible", which has her voice sounding finer than it has in years.
Hatfield has always had a knack of taking a simple mid-tempo song and making it infectious. The group accomplish that with the head-swaying "Now That I Have Found You", and the hook-filled earworm "If I Could". It's a pop rock song that will stick in your brain well after the album is over.
The band's contributions are crucial. A catchy little guitar riff makes "Ordinary Guy" the kind of no nonsense alternative rocker that we so rarely get nowadays. A keyboard whirs, providing an all important element on "If Only We Were Dogs".
It's not all nostalgia on Whatever, My Love either. An uncharacteristic country-feed cha-cha makes "Dog On a Chain" a must-listen. An intriguing structure makes "Wood" almost waddle along (for the lack of a better descriptor). It's not that successful, but it was worth taking the bold chance.
Whatever, My Love will obviously appeal to Hatfield enthusiasts. However, it should also be a good tonic for music fans who think indie music has gotten too homogeneously electronic.
Best tracks: "Dog On a Chain", "If I Could"
Track listing for Whatever, My Love:
- Now That I Have Found You
- Ordinary Guy
- If Only We Were Dogs
- I'm Shy
- Dog On a Chain
- If I Could
- Push Pin
- Blame The Stylist
- I Don't Know What To Do With My Hands
- Parking Lots