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The Sparrow

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Editors’ Notes

James Milne—a.k.a. Lawrence Arabia—has a colorful pop background, having been an integral member of bands like Ruby Suns and The Brunettes before starting this project back in 2006. The third album by Lawrence Arabia opens with “Traveling Shoes,” a softly swinging, jaunty tune rife with sweet strings and plucked guitars. It's steeped in a late-‘50s pop style and recalls “Apple Pie Bed” from 2010’s Chant Darling (a song that won a APRA Silver Scroll Award). It sounds like something Dion could have released a half-century ago, and it’s but one style filtered into this heady mix of intelligent, fresh-sounding pop. Equally charming and captivating are the tip-toeing pianos, warm brass, and Milne’s airy falsetto on “Lick Your Wounds,” the somber, Lennon-esque tones of “Bicycle Racing,” and the dark cynicism and humor of the seductive “The Bisexual.” Artful moments, like “Dessau Rag” (“Schönberg or a Bauhaus band playing ragtime,” according to Milne) and the beautifully dark “Early Kneecappings” stand incomparably alone as pop originals. Recommended for anyone who appreciates the extraordinary songcraft of artists like Rufus Wainwright or Stephin Merritt.

Customer Reviews

Wonderful album

After watching this band live by coincidence I went on to buy their last album "Chant Darling", it was a nice lovely journey thru different sounds and melodies, I had to get this one and it didn't disappoint, get it and have a nice time relaxing while you listen to this.


The conceptual mastermind of Lawrence Arabia. A must buy for anyone alive for honest music bound in creative layers.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Lawrence Arabia -- the pseudonym of James Milne -- is a connoisseur of classic songwriting, creating timeless music inspired as much by 1970's West Coast Americana as the indie pop of New Zealand's Flying Nun Records. Born in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1981, Milne moved to Auckland in 2002, where he first joined indie pop outfit the Brunettes. In 2004 fellow Brunettes member Ryan McPhun formed the Ruby Suns and recruited Milne as part of his ever-evolving lineup. Taking on bass duties in both bands...
Full Bio