The Villas


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The Villas' Secrets may be an album filled with small, subtle pleasures, but that doesn't discount the pleasures it does indeed provide. The Allentown, Pennsylvanian husband-and-wife duo are pop traditionalists that treasure strong, melodic songwriting graced with crisp, subtly inventive production. In a way, they're an East Coast counterpart to the more famous Californian husband-and-wife duo Aimee Mann and Michael Penn (who, admittedly, release solo, not duet, recordings), since the Villas also make strong, lean pop records built on memorable hooks, catchy melodies, and surprisingly detailed productions. The difference is that Secrets is a homemade affair in the best sense of the word, feeling warm, intimate, and inviting. This, by definition, may be a small pleasure, but it's hard not to tap your foot, smile, and hum along as Secrets is playing, especially since the songs slowly work their way into your mind with repeated listens. It may not be a flashy album, but for fans of strong, catchy, straightforward guitar pop, Secrets is worth seeking out.

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