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La Sera Music for Listening to Music To Polyvinyl

A big development on this new record from Katy Goodman, once better known as Kickball Katy of Vivian Girls; for one, this is the first time La Sera are now being spoken about officially as a band, comprising Goodman and her husband and long-time collaborator, Tod Wisenbaker, rather than simply as her solo project. To mark his official entry into the fold (he was heavily involved with the last La Sera album, Hour of the Dawn, too), he’s pulled in a heavyweight producer in the form of Ryan Adams, to whose 1989 cover record he contributed some gorgeous melodic guitar.

Both Hour of the Dawn and its predecessor, Sees the Light, were crisp pop efforts, summery in parts and introspective in others. Music for Listening To is a more subdued effort. The guitar lines are as pretty as they’ve ever been, especially on A Thousand Ways and Take My Heart, although Wisenbaker’s consistent aping of Johnny Marr threatens to grow tiresome by the time the record’s winding down. Adams’ intention behind the desk seems to have been to keep things low-key, but homogenisation reigns instead of subtlety, and de- spite La Sera’s undeniable charm, the result is an LP that fails to fully exploit the considerable talents of the duo behind it.