For years, I have associated this honor with the likes of Doogie Howser, Elvis Presley's "In the Ghetto", Bill Laimbeer's vertical leap, and the dude from Powder. Today, this moniker took on new meaning, as Norwegian DJ/Kings of Convenience frontman Erlend Oye released his newest side project (hopefully) with German DJ Marcin Oez, aptly entitled "Dreams".
Where the Kings' sound is as comfortable as cashmere in any setting, from drinking poolside Mimosas on a Sunday morning, to cuddling by the fireplace on a winter night, to shopping for a birthday present for your sister at Banana Republic, The Whitest Boy Alive is a little less jazzy and a little more minimalist rock. In most songs, the bass, straightforward drumbreat, and breezy guitar riff carry throughout, making it hard to believe that this is the work of two expert DJ's.
Although I have only listened to the album several times, for fear of overplaying it incessantly and having it lose the charm I associate with Erlend's lyrics, the desired effect works for me. While part of the charm of the singer's hush vocals is making depressing lyrics seem playful and pleasant, tracks like "Done With You" and "Borders" have more of a rainy-day, melancholy tone than previous work. For me, the standout track of the album is "Above You", a funky number that has already claimed a prominent, yet assuredly short-lived stint as my MySpace (is that redundant?) profile song. While it is slightly weak at the break, it kicks in with one of the most pleasant guitar over guitar over keytar riffs of the year in the second chorus.
If you are a fan of the Kings of the Convenience, you should enjoy "Dreams." If you are unfamiliar with the Kings, I would highly recommend checking out "Riot on an Empty Street”, which is one of my favorite albums of the decade, before deciding to buy “Dreams”. You can read Pitchfork's review of the album here:
You can purchase these albums here, and if you are not pleased, I will be happy to buy them back from you at 50% of the purchase price: