Saint Etienne's new album is very pleasant. Faint praise? Maybe, but the uncomplicated, retro-pop breeziness of "Good Humor" inspires the same feelings as romantic comedies of the "When Harry Met Sally" variety. There is no angst or fire in these rose-tinted tales of urban love and loneliness. This makes for gratifying pop-music on the album's best tracks, "Split Screen" and "Lose That Girl." Yet while Saint Etienne's smoothly updated '60s girl-group sound is much more sophisticated than the Spice Girls, it lacks the sultriness of Everything But the Girl's oeuvre.
And there's the rub. Saint Etienne make pitch-perfect background music, but repeated listenings reveal no hidden bite. Unlike The Cardigans vocalist Nina Persson, whose sweetly precise vocals battle a sullen and discontented spirit, Saint Etienne's Sarah Cracknell just seems genuinely ... nice. Damning with faint praise again? Yes.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at email@example.com.
Orlando Weekly works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlando’s true free press free.