Music » CD Reviews

Mates of State

Re-Arrange Us (Barsuk)

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Two bandmates and exponential layers of synthesizers, organs, and drums. These are the ingredients that make up Mates of State, the husband-and-wife duo of Jason Hammel and Kori Gardner, whose pop songs are impressively huge, considering there are only two of them. Still, Re-Arrange Us manages to be catchy and simple, despite playfully ornamental details like chimes, horns, handclaps, and a whole lotta looping. Hammel and Gardner compete in a vocal tug-of-war throughout, playing off each other with harmonies and echoes. Highlights include the sunshine-soaked "The Re-arranger" and the indie-pop-cheery "Now," where the title is repeated so many times, it could easily be mistaken for a Meow Mix jingle.

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