The Austin Chronicle

SXSW 2014 Records

Reviewed by Chase Hoffberger, March 14, 2014, Music

The Tontons

Make Out King and Other Stories of Love

One need not consult actual sound clips to ascertain that optimism abounds within the Tontons. The soulful fourpiece backs out of Houston with both buoyancy and sanguinity, be it via track titles like "Magic Hour" and "Paradise" or the chorus lines that ring through "Bones 1." "But today's not that day/And I'm not that girl/I've got time/I've got the whole wide world in my hands." Idealism also emanates throughout the songs, and thanks to the dynamic delivery of singer Asli Omar, the Tontons' debut long-player brims with confidence on "Veida" and the angelic "Pony." Whereas "So Tired" and "Kidd Cemetery" settle on a particular cleanliness, the lead guitars pushing "Bones 1" and "Magic Hour" seem juvenile in comparison and closer "Ruins" collapses out of place. Then again, "Bones 2" proves the Tontons have soul to their marrow. (12mid, Dirty Dog Bar)


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