Lion Cub - American Buffalo (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Lion Cub

American Buffalo (2011)

Topshelf Records

If you like the gentle electronic pop of Say Hi and the Postal Service, then you will probably be able to tolerate Lion Cub. Perhaps that tolerance will one day blossom into respect and, maybe, true love. You will love Lion Cub and you will swear by the band's record American Buffalo, because you love things named after animals.

Or maybe you'll hate this album with the passion of a thousand burning suns. I don't know, man.

Lion Cub consists of two buddies, Chelsey Hahn and Chad Jewett. The duo shares an abiding love of drum machines and orchestral flourishes. American Buffalo is rife with both. Opener and title track "American Buffalo" gently eases listeners into the group's bedroom-quiet, laptop-assisted indie pop aesthetic, and it's a mighty catchy number.

But eventually, American Buffalo hits a wall where all the songs kind of sound the same. For me, that was track five, "Hearts of Cloth." Lion Cub adds all sorts of handclaps and bleeps and blips and sometimes even some bloops to its music, but ultimately the songs all blur together anyway.

Truth is, this band, while competent, doesn't really pull out anything truly stunning. The other groups mentioned in this review's opening paragraph are significantly superior, and while there's nothing glaringly wrong with Lion Cub, there isn't anything transcendentally great about the band either. American Buffalo is a decent record, but I doubt I'll ever think of it again after today.

So, I guess this isn't love then, huh?