Former Orange Peels singer Allen Clapp returned to the indie pop scene with this 2002 collection of breezy pop songs on March Records. Clapp has been the torchbearer of West Coast twee pop since the early '90s, and with Available Light, he experiments with epic 1970s-style pop sounds. He unleashes the combination of synthesizer and 12-string electric guitar on the disc's opening track, "Beautiful/Drop Me a Line." The borderline soft rock sounds are reminiscent of chart-toppers like Elton John and indie rock acts like Fungobat. Clapp performed all of the instruments on the album, taking his do-it-yourself ethic to a new level. "So Right" is possibly the simplest song on the 12-song disc, and it's followed by the slow-motion dance song "High Above the Earth." "Big Bright Shiny Yellow Sun" has an undeniable series of pop hooks, with Clapp's vocals serving as the most uplifting instrument in the song. The album's first single, "Whenever We're Together (Reprise)," shines with bright pop sounds and echoing, angelic vocals. Throughout the disc, Clapp makes use of a wealth of instruments, which include synthesizer, a Fender Rhodes piano, tambourine, chimes, and synthesized strings. The album was recorded at Mystery Lawn Studio in Sunnyvale, CA.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Cramer