I don't know anything about Pipas, except that they share space on the Long Lost Cousin website with the Pines, and a group called, bizarrely and rather brilliantly, Biff Bang Powell. There are doubtless all kinds of connections between all the groups; they probably all hang out in the same pubs and talk about obscure indie records for all I know… it doesn't matter a bit of course. Because what I do know, and what really matters, is that Pipas have made a single for Matinée that sounds just like Pop singles ought to: short, sweet, to the point, no pissing about just, excuse me here, biff, bang, pow. Straight to the heart. 'A Short Film About Sleeping' is especially perfect, coming off a bit like Stars at their bouncing best, and being the best song ever to mention Cassavettes and Passolini. --Tangents
Dear Diary…caught the new Oasis single the other day. Seemed incredibly over-produced; as is the way when your songs are no good and you’re trying to disguise the fact. It never ceases to amaze how much money big studios are prepared to pump into a cow’s ear in the hope of a silk purse. Cos really when you’ve got a handful of good songs you could sing them round a campfire, record them in a kitchen: their charm alone will hold them up and guide them thru this world. Bought the Pipas single (‘A Short Film About Sleeping” Matinée 7”EP) first for the cover. They say you shouldn’t do that don’t they? They say lots. And then for the title. It appealed. It alludes to Krysztof Kieslowski, presumably. Haven’t seen those films for ages. Should watch them again. Then saw that it was on Matinée Records – a trademark of some quality bar minor quibbles about a Janus-like tendency to look backwards as much as forwards. This record is unpretentious, un-overproduced, intimate, breezy and likable, to be honest, while others might well remain quite unmoved. But it’s unapologetic pop, the sort that K was famous for ten years ago: ‘Troublesome’ for example is not unlike Courtney Love the group before Courtney Love the singer said she wanted the Courtney Love name exclusively to herself and Courtney Love would just have to find another name. (I often wonder where Lois is now? Wintering in Olympia perhaps, taking calls, writing the great American novel at lunchtimes. Although it’s just a romantic guess.) And ‘Fingerprints’ too is a 100 seconds of Beat-Happening-like simplicity. Tremulous, tantalising, sweet and trashy in the nicest possible way. ‘Trashy’ is not a pejorative term. It’s a quality. You can barely hear her voice sometimes, buried in natural diffidence, the shy-exuberance. ‘A Short Film About Sleeping’ is slightly different, more a space aged duet buoyed on a wobbly keyboard, satellited by ba-ba-ba-bas, wake up pleas and come-ons. A nice way to start the day; or, at least, better than stumbling into the kitchen and hitting your head on an open cupboard door. And that does it for me. Personally speaking, you can keep your blustery Oasis. --Wide Open Road
A gorgeously packaged seven-inch single (can we all collectively thank Jimmy Matinée for keeping the seven-inch flame in the USA which is totally unfriendly to the format?) Mark + Lupe are my friends, truth be told, but that doesn’t change the fact that they are breaking new ground in genre meshing and dance-ish indiepop; my fave one here is “Troublesome” because it’s ultrafun to sing along to.
Limited to 1,000 copies, what we have here is a three-song seven-inch courtesy of the London duo of Mark and Lupe (the first of whom you may recognize for his work with Bella Vista), which follows up nicely on their previous debut release for Long Lost Cousin. Side A consists of "A Short Film About Sleeping," a title that had me expecting a wandering and atmospheric number that would sound like the ideal companion for pillow snuggling and dreaming. What I found instead was a swinging and spacey modern pop song, built around electronics, crisp guitar, and dueling male and female vocals. The harmonies are sugary sweet and irresistible, and the "bah bah bahs" will have you humming along in no time. It is perky yet gentle, qualifying as one of the most adorable things I have heard lately, and it is sure to bring a smile to your face. With its bouncy feel and whispers of "Come on, wake up," it feels more like a call to rise and shine than a companion for dreaming, but even something as unpleasant as waking up with a hangover could be an enjoyable experience with a soundtrack like this. Side B features "Troublesome" and "Fingerprints," two rather brief melodic pop affairs that are driven more by straightforward guitar work and drum taps than their predecessor. These two songs are equally upbeat though, and they hint at the same sort of infectiousness as the gem on Side A. "Troublesome" comes first and is virtually irresistible, with the female vocals taking the lead and the male counterparts playing an excellent support role. Like "A Short Film About Sleeping," this one will have you bobbing around within a few seconds. "Fingerprints" uses a similar approach, but with a slightly more aggressive feel, at least as "aggressive" as a cute little indie-pop song can get. The female vocals are again supported by the male, and the guitar and drums are gentle but precise. Overall, the feeling of these three songs is laid back, breezy, warm, and inviting. Every one is short, sweet, and capable of lodging itself simultaneously in your heart and in your brain. These are simple pop songs with a minimal amount of polish, and you would not want them any other way. --Delusions of Adequacy
"A Short Film About Sleeping" is a rich title, but the equally rich song that carries it seems more like a call to wake up than a bedtime tale. "Come on, wake up, the movie's about to start," the two singers (one male, one female) sing in a pretty, stylish way. Propelled by a laidback-funky beat aided by catchy bass and keyboard parts, they also allude to Pasolini and Cassavettes and to being on the screen themselves, all in an enigmatic way that makes the already catchy song doubly enticing. The two songs on the b-side are guitar-led upbeat pop tunes more reminiscent of groups like Dear Nora or The Aisler's Set, both with the same infectiousness as the A-side. --Erasing Clouds
Pipas on the other hand, go straight for the pop jugular with ‘ba-ba-ba-baa’s aplenty. Imagine a cross between Atomic Kitten and Stereolab and Pipas emerge, not probably not screaming and kicking - they’re far too sweet for that, but making a right old fuss all the same. A dream in sound. --Tasty
"a short film about sleeping" is a... modern sound, which manages to be both subtle and bloody brilliant - a bit like michel platini circa 1982 - maybe it's how dubstar would play if they'd been forced to rough it with sarah-types before being rescued by matinée (which does, incidentally, rather appear to be where all the top tunes are coming from this year). and "troublesome", while not quite living up to its title, is certainly endearingly pesky. --In Love With These Times In Spite Of These Times
This is the second release from this London duo of Mark (ex-Bella Vista) and Lupe. On the A-side, you'll find the synth-poppy "A Short Film About Sleeping", which features dual lead vocals, and a generally laidback mood - like Kitty Craft with more guitars. On the flip are two very bouncy tunes similar to some of Mark's older stuff (Bella Vista, Nik-l-nip, etc), with fluid (almost Marine Girls-ish) basslines, jangly acoustic guitars and some of the quietest muted drums you've ever heard. Very fun, indeed! MTQ=3/3