Any Day by The sea and CakeRelease date: May 11, 2018
Label: Thrill Jockey
Is there a more proper time for a new The Sea & Cake album than when the spring is in full swing and summer approaching? After all, it has been six years since their previous outing Runner (2012) and the waiting (for some of us) is quite overdue. Maybe the title, Any Day comes from fans asking them, when is the new album coming out?
As is the case with Sam Prekop’s and Archer Prewitt’s lyrics, it can be anybody’s guess, but as usual, they let you keep on guessing. The wait maybe has something to do with the fact that the original bassist Eric Claridge, who came to the group with Prekop from cult faves Shrimp Boat and was not really replaced by anybody, making Prekop, Prewitt who started out in Cocktails, another Chicago cults band and Tortoise drummer John McEntire re-consider their sound.
Luckily, their re-consideration didn’t bring in any radical changes to their sound. It just made it more breezy, light (without turning it into soap balloons that will burst any second) and even more listenable. On the other hand, with Any Day The Sea & Cake remain probably the only true purveyors of jazzy pop/rock that simultaneously stimulate your ears and what is in between them (The Aluminium Group, another similar-sounding group, again from Chicago are not to be heard from these days).
The album itself is another sophisticated statement in how to present your musical and lyrical ideas with the accent on melody and intricate rhythmic changes without any flashy instrumental excursions or overly complex musical phrases. Essentially, how to make simple thing sound complex and vice versa.
Pick any track here, from the opener “Cover the Mountain” through the title track or subtly intricate “Occurs” to the closer “These Falling Arms” and you simply cannot find any musical or lyrical misstep or a boring second. Another great one from The Sea and Cake, worth the six-year wait.