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Album Review
Copeland - You Are My Sunshine Album Cover

Copeland - You Are My Sunshine

Reviewed by
8.9
Copeland - You Are My Sunshine
Record Label: Tooth & Nail Records
Release Date: October 14, 2008
It’s autumn, and as the leaves change to vibrant hues of red and orange, yellow and apricot, and the air chills to a sweater-beckoning incalescence, much of North America rolls over in preparation for winter. It seems like things slow down and mellow out, and although walks become brisk and hoods become bundled, there’s still a bit of peaceful listlessness permeated throughout the atmosphere. This is prime season for a fall record, one which captures the ease of the season, as Mother Nature sheds its summer skin and buries its acorns for wintertime. The four-piece indie band called Copeland, ironically bred out of the autumn-less state of Florida, capture much of the accords of fall on their fourth full-length entitled You Are My Sunshine, a moody and ambient mix of beautifully orchestrated tracks worthy to be played on repeat.

“Should You Return”, the album opener, presents the band similarly to where they left off on Eat, Sleep, Repeat with a mixture of slow penitence and quiet soul, as the cooperative voice of vocalist Aaron Marsh floats above blended guitars and synthesizers. Although it’s fair to say the band draws heavily from the electronic and experimental facets of bands like Radiohead (“Not Allowed”, “Strange and Unprepared”), and the often brittle tonality of Coldplay via the Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends era (“The Grey Man”), You Are My Sunshine gathers into a sound that is too breathy to be rock and not dynamic enough to be Sigur Ros. Instead, the soothing melodies and swelling guitars make a sound that is Copeland, and only Copeland.

“The Day I Lost My Voice (The Suitcase Song)” is small and beautiful, never building enough to break the graceful delicateness, but never quiet enough to bore. Lyrical and almost poetic, Marsh’s vocals take a backseat to the guest vocals of Rae Cassidy, which are as intoxicating as they are transfixing. On “Chin Up”, Marsh swoons “you break your neck to keep your chin up” in light falsetto with a sort of indeterminate cause, part of the mystery that makes Copeland who they are. “On the Safest Ledge” is vocally oriented as well, as Marsh’s vocals take the forefront in dramatic craftsmanship of melody and control before building to a heavier chorus and more spectacular guest vocals from Cassidy. All of the aforementioned however, offer much ado to musicianship, through wafting piano melodies to far-off sounding drum-beats, all complimenting each other to the full extent.

“Not So Tough Found Out”, however, is the band’s masterpiece, and at over 10 minutes in length, never reaches a bore. Written around a solitary drifting melody and a heavy atmosphere as created by reverbed guitars, the song remains heavy and light at the same time. Taking cues from post-rockers This Will Destroy You, spacey electronic samples add to the already ethereal atmosphere until the song comes to a close attached to the same melody that rung it in.

You Are My Sunshine is not a departure from the vision fronted on Eat, Sleep, Repeat, but is simply better. The melodies are better, the vocals are better, the production is better, the musicianship is better; everything is better. The band has capitalized on the proliferation of shoegaze and ambient music as evidenced by the grand swelling guitars and keyboards often leaving the listeners hypnotized behind a soft cumulus of sound. Indeed, although the leaves will change and fall and snow will soon cover the ground outside of my apartment, this album, although relevant now, will surely become a staple in my music collection despite the season, to be enjoyed both in the dead of winter and under the heat of the hot July sun.

Recommended if You LikeColdplay; Radiohead; Sleeping At Last; The Morning Light

myspace.com/copeland
This review is a user submitted review from topher465. You can see all of topher465's submitted reviews here.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 9 of 9
06:06 PM on 11/11/08
#2
hockeyguitar99
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Good review, but I the I think the first 2 bands in the RIYL are ridiculous comparisons.
12:28 PM on 11/13/08
#3
-ben
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Good review, but I the I think the first 2 bands in the RIYL are ridiculous comparisons.

I disagree, Copeland cannot be compared to much of anything, but Coldplay and Radiohead are both in the same vein imo.

Great review of a great album.
01:08 PM on 11/13/08
#4
hockeyguitar99
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I disagree, Copeland cannot be compared to much of anything, but Coldplay and Radiohead are both in the same vein imo.

Great review of a great album.
How so? They sound nothing like Radiohead. Even if they did, you would have to specify a specific album. There are few to no similarities between this and Kid A.
05:37 PM on 11/13/08
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-ben
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How so? They sound nothing like Radiohead. Even if they did, you would have to specify a specific album. There are few to no similarities between this and Kid A.

I do agree with the specifying an album thing, Radiohead's sound has progressed so much. But listening to In Rainbows I can definitely hear similarities in the feel of the music. Radiohead fans for the most part would enjoy Copeland. The RIYL needs Lydia though.
05:57 PM on 11/13/08
#6
topher465
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How so? They sound nothing like Radiohead. Even if they did, you would have to specify a specific album. There are few to no similarities between this and Kid A.

I put Radiohead because it kinda has a similar feel, not so much like OK Computer but more of a Kid A feel with some of the electronics and guitar. Coldplay is a no brainer to me...a lot of the guitar sounds are similar to that of Viva.
06:04 PM on 11/13/08
#7
hockeyguitar99
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I do agree with the specifying an album thing, Radiohead's sound has progressed so much. But listening to In Rainbows I can definitely hear similarities in the feel of the music. Radiohead fans for the most part would enjoy Copeland. The RIYL needs Lydia though.
I think that some Radiohead albums would definitely work, but not in general.
11:01 AM on 11/14/08
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-ben
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I think that some Radiohead albums would definitely work, but not in general.

true. specification isn't necessary though. nice avatar
05:10 PM on 12/01/08
#9
roju
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I do agree with the specifying an album thing, Radiohead's sound has progressed so much. But listening to In Rainbows I can definitely hear similarities in the feel of the music. Radiohead fans for the most part would enjoy Copeland. The RIYL needs Lydia though.

definitly needs lydia

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