Thursday, June 28, 2012
Modern Outsider Records 
Fire Note Says: Fourth lp from Cincy band Pomegranates showcases their growth, risk and confidence in their current style of indie dream-pop.
Heaven marks the fourth studio long player from Cincinnati band Pomegranates and it represents some of their most adventurous work to date. Right from the opening title track the band shifts its dream art-pop style into high gear with the strumming guitar in the background, some reverb and a floating vocal that sits just above the music. The group once again splits vocal duties between Joey Cook and Isaac Karns which gives the album some diversity just based on the guys much different pitch.
The tempos on Heaven really give the record its tone as Pomegranates quickly shift them throughout the album as "Pass Away" is a flowing dance-pop song while the upbeat and feverish "Sisters" whooshes by your ears and keeps your feet tapping. One of the album highlights comes on the much slower ballad like track "Something Everybody Wants" that is a free floating ambient number which is entrancing, peaceful and completed with a very Flaming Lips type vocal delivery. Another stand out here on Heaven is "Night Run" which finds the catchy layered multi-vocals playing back n forth while an increased foot tapping beat grabs your attention immediately The song then crescendos into a much louder rock piece before settling back down only to rev up again in its very last minute making its complex song structure shine bright as it is the perfect top notch example of what the Pomegranates can achieve.
The album was co-produced by the band and Miguel Urbiztondo (Cracker, Sparklehorse, Daniel Johnston) which gives it its sonic superiority. I don't feel that it surpasses the bands excellent 2010 release One Of Us but has many top moments and a track that rivals that records best work. Heaven takes several listens to finally get into as some of the higher falsettos take some adjusting to but once you are hooked on this record it is very hard to shake. Heaven is an album that gets better with every spin and feels like a band hitting their stride while still having so much more to offer. The good news is that I don't think the Pomegranates are going anywhere and with just a small amount of tweaking this is one band that has even better things still out in front of them!
Key Tracks: "Night Run", "Something Everybody Wants", "Heaven"
Bands With Similar Fire:
Bear In Heaven
Pomegranates: One Of Us [Fire Note Review 10/25/10] [#25 Top 50 of 2010]
Pomegranates: Everybody, Come Outside! [Fire Note Review 4/7/09]
Modern Outsider Records
-Reviewed by Christopher Anthony