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 Review archive:  # a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z

Go to the Raymondo website  Raymondo - s/t [Matamore - 2004]

When it's summer, one always needs summer music. Pretty obvious I guess. More accurately: if you live in a temperate area of the world, you'll need summer music that is at the same time sunny and melancholic (in case it starts raining). Let me introduce you to Raymondo...

From Belgium, they have been around for a couple of years, self-releasing a cd-r with the songs featuring on the album, and playing quite a few gigs. It was with some excitement that I heard they had finally started recording an album last year, especially since the producer was no other than Adam Wiltzie -it was recorded in his appartment in Brussels. For those not in the know, Wiltzie is one half of the godlike Stars of the Lid, as well as producer for bands such as Windsor for the Derby. This self-titled album is released by Matamore, a fairly recent belgian indie label. It's their second release (after the We vs Death / Tom Sweetlove split, review in our archive), and it's nice to see that they chose to lead quality vs quantity policy.

There is something modest, low-profile about Raymondo's music. It's not as if the songs immediately made you think "wow! fucking Christ!". It's a slower process. Of course, each track is instantly likeable, but the "added value" comes gradually. Basically, you don't get anything revolutionary. But quality songwriting is getting so rare these days that the attention they give to melodies make Raymondo stand out.

They are not quite in league with a song like Halfway to the threeway, but Raymondo are pretty much in the pop à la Jim O'Rourke category. The fact that they have some BossaNova feel, some jazzy bits, and even a rather droney, experimental track (The highest restaurant) make for the variety of this delightful -albeit way too short- 35 minutes album.

This is typically the sort of music that makes me want to write an overtly sentimental review. Unfortunately, some bloke from a french-speaking free magazine did it before me, and he did it good, so I don't feel like doing it myself. Let's just say it's probably the best album of the year to listen to half-asleep, lying on the couch with your better half, with all windows open and the smell of summer in the early evening. In short: great music for the best moments of your life.

Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5

François Monti
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