Focus on the vocals
Brooklyn-based band TEEN have released their fourth studio album Good Fruit, months after teasing their fans with single releases. The anticipation was verifiably worth the wait–Good Fruit spits lyrical rock with unruly synth-pop that simply cannot be tamed. With this album, TEEN unwound their genre into asymmetrical streams of musical experimentalism with beautiful cohesion and collective vision. Vocalist Kristina “Teeny” Lieberson, and her sisters Katherine Lieberson and Lizzie Lieberson, mesh together perfectly as a dynamic band. TEEN might just be the cool kids you’ve always wanted to be.
The production planning in “Popular Taste” splits the audio between right and left headphones to give the listener a surround-sound, 3D effect. “Ripe” is well titled–the song is perfectly ripened and ready to be consumed by listeners, with a synth-driven backdrop of orchestration and vocals that serenade like a techno-harp. The syncopated high hat in “Only Water” caters to the electronic beat with post-pop precision. The instrumental melody in “Radar” sounds theremin-esque as if electronically generated without physical contact on the 1920s machine. The looping musicality sounds ethereal and might make you dizzy with fascination. But TEEN refuse to let you return to conscious reality as the transitions between tracks are seamless.
“Connection” picks up where the preceding track left off, engaging you in their psychedelic alternate reality. The 6:59 track transitions from harmonic layers of experimental vocals bounded by a 4/4 rhythmic synth bass beat to an ascending lyrical scale accompanied by a hint of gentle saxophone. Hypnotizing vocals command your ears for complete dissociation in “Luv 2 Luv” with a drumming-dance beat meant for your subconscious attention. With experimental style and precise execution, TEEN is unlike any contemporary pop-rock band. “Shadow” is anything but sensitive; the vocals are fiercely captivating with staccato-rap–both piercing and alluring. The vocals in “Runner” leap from treble to bass with a fracturing cool-factor and would make an excellent addition to any DJ mix.
TEEN turn out one good synthesized bassline after another, and in “Putney” the wiry vibrating sound that oscillates around the harmonic vocals fixes itself on futuristic electronica. With heavy breathing sample sounds and feedback rippling over the airwaves, this track is hauntingly sultry, to say the least. “Putney” is a record-breaker, meaning the vinyl just might shatter the diamond-tipped-needle on your turntable. The last little taste of TEEN comes out in the Cajon-like drum beat in “Pretend,” matched with lyrical sensitivity and retro-siren sounds. No song is ever lost to overproduction in Good Fruit, as TEEN follow their artistic vision with intuition and creative genius. TEEN seduce their listeners with experimental vocals and indelible backtracks, but more of all with undoubtedly striking talent.