We Can Die Happy

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As if releasing the excellent mid-fi pop gem Yours Conditionally wasn't enough, Tennis came back in 2017 with a five-song EP that improves on the songs and sound of the album. We Can Die Happy finds the duo cleaning up their sound just a bit, while writing some incredibly hooky choruses and alternately filling up and breaking every heart in their path along the way. The pop songs are ultra poppy, chiming and bubbling like sunshine on a crappy day. "No Exit" grooves along like Fleetwood Mac on a good day or HAIM on their best day ever, "Born to Be Needed" swings and sways like vintage Dusty Springfield, and the magical "Diamond Rings" conjures up the Dwight Twilley Band and lets Alaina Moore show off a wide range of rockabilly yelps as the guitars twang and reverb echoes around her. The sad songs are deep blue: "I Miss That Feeling" tries to hide the sadness behind a sweeping mix and some almost jaunty piano, while on the other hand, "Building God" drapes itself in all the feels and sports a truly aching chorus that finds Moore pleading "I can change/I can change/I can change" as the backing vocals and keys swirl around her. The five songs go past in a blink, leaving listeners wanting more from a band that's at the top of their talents, marrying lovely songs with beguiling arrangements and crafting some of the best pop music around.

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