Release Date: July 5, 2011
45 Records; 12 Tracks
Review by: Natalia Buia
The Little Stevies from down under rely on simplicity and optimism to lure in listeners with their sunny, sophomore effort Attention Shoppers.
Released on March 11 in their homeland of Australia and just last month here in Canada, Attention Shoppers includes an outpour of laidback pop-folk songs. The opener, "Accidentally", is a honeyed melody, perfect for the opening credits of a romantic comedy. The band has been playing a couple folk festivals this season — they'll be at the Ottawa Folk Festival August 27 — and if there's one thing the band can't do, it's dissapoint and dishearten a crowd with their music.
Upon first listen, it appears the main goal for sisters Sibylla and Bethany Stephen along with Robin Geradts-Gill is to perk up listeners with cavity-inducing sweetness. For the jaded and cynic, Attention Shopper isn’t easy to come by.
"The Day We Went Away" best exemplifies the wondrous vocals between the two talented sisters. While some songs like this one are a little too cheery and borderline sappy, the use of horns and ukulele adds panache.
"No Button" is the band's token song for the broken hearted. It's not common to hear Sibylla Stephen sing with such longing and desire with no-frills lyrics like: "There is no button that I could press to sweep you safe from this mess… I know it's selfish but I need you here. How could the world spin if you were to leave?"
Other songs like "Feel It" and "Love Love Love" further prove while the lyrics aren’t the most elaborative, the poignance of the band lies in the pitch-perfect vocals.
Most, if not all, albums aren't catered to everyone. Attention Shoppers caters to those with a sweeter disposition. If you enjoy spending warm summer days riding bikes in the park, pop this record on your iPod and you’ll be smiling for days. The Little Stevies take on Castro's Lounge this Sunday, August 14 in Toronto.