She & Him

Thursday

SXSW Records

She & Him

Volume Two (Merge)

These days, every screen queen thinks she's a pop princess (see: Johansson, Scarlett), but Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward prove with She & Him's sophomore album that 2008's Volume One was more than a serendipitous tryst. While its sequel lingers in the same pop nostalgia, Deschanel vocalizes with a more natural confidence, and Ward's production feels fuller and slightly more adventurous. Infectiously upbeat numbers "In the Sun" and "Don't Look Back" bounce from the speakers, but the more subdued sway of "Me and You," "Sing," and gentle closing lullaby "If You Can't Sleep" serve the unconcerned, charming ease of Deschanel's voice best. As before, Ward largely avoids the mic, though his rasp, rising in harmony on "Lingering Still" and dueting NRBQ cover "Ridin' in My Car," provides highlights, as does the coy shuffle of Skeeter Davis' "Gonna Get Along Without You Now." Although too saccharine in places, She & Him's second time around spins wonderfully bittersweet. (Thu., 10pm, Cedar Street Courtyard; Fri., 10pm, Lustre Pearl; Sat., 8pm, Auditorium Shores.)

***.5

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 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
Friday Showcases
Friday Showcases
Korea, Japan, Spain, Africa – see the world from single showcases

March 20, 2015

Saturday Interview
Saturday Interview

Kevin Curtin, March 20, 2015

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
... And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead
X: The Godless Void and Other Stories (Record Review)

Alejandra Ramirez, Feb. 21, 2020

Texas Platters
Daniel Johnston
Chicago 2017 (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Feb. 21, 2020

More by Doug Freeman
Crucial Concerts for the Coming Week
Crucial Concerts for the Coming Week
Exhorder, Lera Lynn, Sobbrs, a Tom Waits tribute, and more shows worth seeing

Dec. 3, 2021

What We're Listening to Right Now
What We're Listening to Right Now
Aaron Stephens, Paul Cauthen, Drakulas, Glasshealer, Pretty Little Thieves, and more local sounds

Nov. 26, 2021

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

She & Him

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

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