A Simply Colony is an interesting blend of high harmonies and quirky pop music that often seems slow and melodic, but with contrasting dual vocals of Michael Dodson and Lara Mitchell, making the album robust and complex while also being simplistic in its intensions. Make It Start is the debut album by this Portland pair which infuses Michael’s choral training with Lara’s acoustic guitar riffs is a nice relief from the hipster electronic laden pop music world.
The album starts with the upbeat “Long Division” with its hooky beats and gangling acoustic guitar compliments, the tenor sound in Michael’s voice is as beautiful as butterflies dancing on a cool spring day. This is quickly followed by the stark contrast of distorted vocals over heavy beats in “Thread the Needle,” which gives the feeling the song is constant motion like a spinning top.
Next up is the angelic softness of “On Your Side” that gives words of encouragement as two lovers would in the loving chatter while lying next to one another in bed. “No King for a Crown” follows, providing hauntingly simple harmonies over distorted vox and menacing drum beats and keyboards.
The next song is my favorite of the album, and first single “One Foot Out the Door” which is a simple song in construction but offers a deeper saddening lyric of non commitment to the ones we love or have loved. Another favorite of mine is “Seven Days on the Mend” which prominently features Lara’s spellbinding vocals over a kaleidoscope of sound. “Oh Maria” is the next track that is very subtle as well as powerful in its soft and tenderness.
The album rounds out with two stellar tracks: the funky and jazzy “The Hand You Hold” and the hypnotically groovy “The Fury Inside the Sound.” Both are interesting and soulful in their own right much like the whole album itself. Though at times slow and a bit too mellow for my tastes I can still say with conviction I liked the album as it progressed until it peaks and begins its decline.