The Rosebuds

Record review

Phases & Stages

The Rosebuds

Birds Make Good Neighbors (Merge)

Birds Make Good Neighbors is autumn wrapped up in cashmere: rich, comfortable, welcome. North Carolinian couple Ivan Howard and Kelly Crisp know it well on their sophomore album: "I've waited for the leaves to fall, for old John White to save us all," they sing on the galloping "Leaves Do Fall." Crisp's vox, barely heard on the previous Make Out, caffeinates Howard's burnished words with vibrancy and sass. Where their debut swarms with delicious pop from the Sixties, Birds pounces on the swirling acoustics of the Eighties and the heartwarming sentiment of the Nineties. With the reverberating "The Lovers' Rights" and the uplifting resonance of opener "Hold Hands and Fight," Howard and Crisp turn the familiar into something unique. Powerful ("Outnumbered") and emotive ("Warm Where You Lay"), the Rosebuds have broken the indie rock mold of sappy love songs and grief-stricken anthems. The exuberant "Shake Our Tree" writes life's true story: "Before the winter takes hold and the figs dry up cold, the birds all meet in that tree and confess love's what they need." They really do make good neighbors. (The Rosebuds land at the Parish Friday, Nov. 25.)

****

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 36 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Midcentury
Modern Nostalgia (Record Review)

Michael Toland, May 25, 2018

Texas Platters
Okkervil River
In the Rainbow Rain (Record Review)

Abby Johnston, May 25, 2018

More by Darcie Stevens
Phases & Stages
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
It's Blitz! (Record Review)

April 3, 2009

Spotlight: The Wooden Birds
Spotlight: The Wooden Birds
9pm, the Parish

March 20, 2009

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2018

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle