Day Fevers (Independent)
If Mercury Rev had been around in the ’60s and someone making a B-movie called the band up and said “I’m making one of those Sergio Leone–type dusters, only mine is set in outer space, and it needs a score,” the music that resulted might sound something like “Sunrise”. The opening track of Art d’Ecco’s debut album, Day Fevers, is every bit as weird as that description makes it sound, containing both spaghetti-western guitar twang and in-sound-from-way-out synths.
Things get a bit more normal after that, or at least d’Ecco sticks mostly to pop-song structures. The androgynously voiced singer, who often sounds a lot like Sweeney Todd’s Nick Gilder, draws on influences that will doubtless be lost on many listeners. “Rita Mitsouko”, for example, name-checks the French new-wave duo of the title and drops in a reference to its 1986 single “C’est Comme Ça”.
Even if you don’t quite get where he’s coming from, you won’t be able to deny the infectiousness of “She So Hot”, with its horny brass and glam-stomp beat. “I’ll Never Give You Up” is an oddity among oddities, being the only electro-disco cut on Day Fevers, but its glitter-bombed groove and lustful declarations make it one of the record’s high points.