Album Review: The Spinto Band – Shy Pursuit




The Spinto Band belong to an elite club of indie one-hit wonders. From the opening strums of mandolin, it was clear that their 2005 track “Oh, Mandy” was a rush of pop perfection. Like other bands of their ilk (Peter, Bjorn & John, etc.), they have since been chasing that moment. With their latest effort, Shy Pursuit, the band has recaptured that moment

The Delaware quintet are journeymen of the indie circuit, having formed in 1995 and amassed 10 albums. With Shy Pursuit, they’ve harnessed their nearly 20-year career to craft their pop masterwork, falling neatly between Wilco circa Summerteeth and Harry Nilsson. More than half the songs clock in under three minutes, and this economical approach leaves us with no fat. A pop track like “Cookie Falls” best exemplifies this, arriving as sweet as the title leads you to believe with Krill singing, “Knock on your door/call out a name/fold in your arms together.”

It’s also just a good time for this album. The keyboard flourishes and chugging bassline on lead single “Take It” will have you making a beeline for the beach, while a track like “Jackhammer”, with the boom and warm glow of fireworks in July, is a countrified slow burn that builds to a crescendo that stretches the band’s well-able vocals. Whether it’s the slippery guitar lines of “Adda Lee” or the marching African acoustic strums on “The Living Things”, there’s much to savor in this new batch of pop treats cooked up by the Spintos.

With Shy Pursuit, The Spinto Band are inching closer towards being one of today’s stronger pop traditionalists, and currently it’s their best chance at squashing past hit, “Oh, Mandy”, with absolute confidence. If nothing else, it’ll go on to soundtrack what should be a scorcher of a summer.

Essential Tracks: “Cookie Falls”, “Jackhammer”, “Take It”, and “Adda Lee”