Release Date: Jan 23, 2007
Record label: Blue Note
Genre(s): Indie, Rock, Electronic
As a label, Blue Note has been changing its focus, drifting closer and closer to mainstream pop material -- not that there's anything wrong with this, but it is a bit of a shock that the name label in jazz since 1939 is looking for hits with Elisabeth Withers and a third Norah Jones offering. That said, the Metro Blue imprint of the label is as adventurous as ever, and the self-titled offering from the Bird and the Bee is about as eclectic as it gets. The Bird and the Bee are vocalist and songwriter Inara George (for music historians, she is the daughter of the late Little Feat singer, guitarist, and songwriter Lowell George) and multi-instrumentalist/producer Greg Kurstin.
As their moniker suggests, the bird and the bee tackles the act of coupling — and its emotional repercussions. Angelic-voiced singer Inara George (daughter of late Little Feat frontman Lowell George) and multi-instrumentalist Greg Kurstin create space-age pop that cunningly combines bossa nova languidity with Beach Boys-style lushness. The sugary melodies are balanced by the tart lyrics, where George pecks at manipulative dudes (”F—ing Boyfriend”) and ruminates about failed flings (”I’m a Broken Heart”).
Review Summary: The Bird and the Bee combine Zero 7 and Lily Allen, with mixed results, on their Blue Note Records debut.The birds and the bees is a timeless tale that almost every child hears a form of at least once in his or her life. The story tells, in a not so subtle method, the way in which babies are made. The actual conversation that follows tends to be one of the most awkward moments in the average life, both for child and parent.
Imagine seeing the girl from Ipanema shivering on a beach in Norway - that's roughly the sensation you get listening to the Bird and the Bee's debut album. The melodies are warm, the influences (bossa nova and jazz standards) mellifluous, but a chink of ice is lodged in its sophisticated heart. That's largely down to singer Inara George: just when you think she's overworking the doe-eyed sickly-sweet pose, her breathy voice snaps into a tone of chilling sharpness.