I've really enjoyed tapping my toe to Ices whilst ironing, or holding the door to the Jakes open, to hear it better when it's playing in the living room.
A pop record of utter radiance; genius isn't the right word, no way. But I can see why people could lightly throw that phrase about in relation to this new record by Lia Ices; that whole "yeahyeahyeahyeah, that bit's genius yeahyeahyeahyeah" talk you hear now and again. To be fair, it's entirely in keeping with the conversation we have with music now. In that records like Lia Ices' newie are like one of those blended fruit juice drinks - whatever they're marketed as. Refreshing, wholesome, and somehow very moreish because of their implicit, invigorating transparency.
This isn't to say Lia Ices' new record isn't great, oh but it IS; and it would take a hard, atrophied heart to deny the wonderfulness of Tell Me, Magick, Thousand Eyes, or How We Are; especially those last two, with their strong associations of that magical, languorous, HEADY summer of 88, and the feeling of something beautiful just out of reach; that whole "Thatcher Free Zone" happiness. I've really enjoyed tapping my toe to Ices whilst ironing, or holding the door to the Jakes open, to hear it better when it's playing in the living room. Even if I also get the feeling that some of the bittersweet melodies on this new LP will eventually grate, and some of the Sahel Sounds stylings will prove themselves to be as permanent as the gadflies currently scudding about the canals of the Netherlands. It's of no consequence.
Reading this back I may start to convince myself (even if it is by way of a few glases of red wine) that this is a perfect pop record. The pace is magnificent; Ices is confident to run a few weepies past us; such as the traipsing, lolloping Love Ices Over. And its surefooted cheek is something you just have to grin at. Even the bit where she gets "serious" is great; Waves is a fine ender and up there in the "it's my party and I will unbutton Ma Soul" ranks, right there with that ender track I can't remember the name of on Bongwater's Power of Pussy* where Ann Magnuson belts out her anger at the Patriarchy.
But will I remember this LP next year? Will I? What will it say about me and well, everything else, if I don't?
*No, I'm not looking it up on Wiki, you do it.